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Edited by Mike Hudnall 

We test seven dual-scan 

passive matrix color 

notebooks for under $2,500. 



By David English 

You can make your financial 

dreams come true. 



By Richard O. Mann 
Supercharge vour old PC. 



By Richard O. Mann 

Act! 2.0 for Windows from 




By Clifton Karnes 
IBM's new ThinkPad 360Cs. 



By Clifton Karnes 

Create a miniature network 

with DOS 6's Interlnk. 



Edited by Robert Bixby 

Answers to tough questions. 



By Tony Roberts 
Let Doskey make your 
command line work fly. 



By Tom Campbell 
Win32 and you. 



Edited by 
Richard C. Leinecker 
Tips from our readers. 



By Denny Atkin 

Penthouse Interactive: 

Virtual Photo Shoot from 

Penthouse Video. 



By Mark Minasi 

A TechNet subscription will 

let you in on the secrets of 




By Robert Bixby 

Fax and figures: Advances 

and improvements in fax 

software and hardware. 



By Byron Poole 

A quick look at top 

computer news from around 

the world. 




By David English 

New multimedia products at 




By Scott A. May 

Get more out of school with 

the latest knowledge-based 




Edited by Polly Cillpam 

Hot new hardware, cool 

new software. 



By Peter Scisco 

Thinkin' Things from 




By Peter Olafson 
Apogee's new 3-D engine. 



By Scott A. May 

The Horde from Crystal 




By Denny Atkin 

Intergalactic financial 




By Rick Broida 

The ultimate computer 




WinPro Entertainer, 

In the Black, 

Return to Zork, 

Stacker 4.0, 

Harvard Graphics, 


Bug Adventure, 


Compaq Contura 4/25c, 

MiG-29, Hornet, 

Take-a-Break Pinball for 

Windows, Eight Ball Deluxe, 

and Ambra 486DX2-50. 


See page 105. 

COMPUTE (ISSN 0194-357X) is published monthly in the U.S. and Canada by COMPUTE Publications International Ltd.. 1965 Broadway. New York NY 10023-5965. Volume 16, Number 
9, Issue 163. Copyright 1994 by COMPUTE Publications International Ltd. All rights reserved. COMPUTE : s a registered trademark of COMPUTE Publications International Ltd. Distributed 
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Editor Clifton Karnes 
Art Director Robin Case Mykytyn 

Managing Editor 

Features Editor 

Reviews Editor 

Gazette and Online Editor 

Entertainment Editor 

Senior Copy Editor 

Copy Editor 

Editorial Assistant 

Contributing Editors 


David English 

Robert Bixby 

Mike Hudnall 

Tom Netsel 

Jiil Booth 

Karen Huffman 

Margaret Ramsey 

Polly Cillpam 

Denny Alkin, Sylvia Graham, 

Tony Roberts. Karen Siepak 

Kris Lawrence 

Kimberly Martineau 

Assistant Art Director Kenneth A Hardy 
Designer Katie Murdock 
Copy Production Manager Terry Cash 

Production Manager De Potter 

Traffic Manager Barbara A. Williams 

Manager Troy Tucker 
Programmers Sherman Brown 
Steve Draper 
Bradley M. Small 


President and COO 

Executive Vice President, 


Vice President 

and Editorial Director 

Operations Manager 

Office Manager 

Sr. Administrative Assistant 


Kathy Keeton 
William Tynan 

Keith Ferrell 

David Hensley Jr. 
Sybil Agee 
Julia Fleming 
LeWanda Fox 


Vice President Peter T. Johnsmeyer 
and Associate Publisher (212) 496-6100 


Fuli-Page end Standard Display Ads. East Coast— Peter T. k uhns- 
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Broadway, New York, NY 10023; (212) 496-6100 Southeast 
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Bob Guccione, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer 

Kathy Keeton, Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer 

William F. Marlieb, President/Marketing, Sales & Circulation 

Richard M. Cohen, Exec. V.P./Treasurer 

Patrick J. Gavin, Exec, V.P./Operations and Chief Financial Officer 

Frank DeVmo, Exec. V. P. 'Graphics Director 

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Sr. VP and CFO: Patrick J. Gavin; VP and Dir., Sales Promotions 
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Jane Homiish. 


Clifton Karnes 

This issue's Test Lab focuses on 
seven dual-scan passive matrix 
color notebooks, each priced at 
under $2,500. The quality of dual- 
scan displays is getting closer to 
that of their active matrix high-end 
brothers, and the $2,500 price point 
has become a battleground for some 
very powerful, colorful machines. 

One dual-scan notebook that 
wasn't available in time for our Test 
Lab report is the new IBM ThinkPad 
360Cs. It wouldn't quite have made 
the price cut anyway, coming in just 
$99 over our $2,500 limit, but this ma- 
chine is so notable in so many ways 
that I'd like to talk about it a little. 

The 360Cs's standard configuration 
doesn't sound like anything to write 
home about. It is powered by a 25- 
MHz SL-enhanced 486SX CPU, 
comes with either a 170MB or a 
340MB hard drive, and houses 4MB of 
RAM, expandable to 20MB. Video, as 
already noted, is dual-scan passive ma- 
trix display. Look beyond these ordi- 
nary numbers, however, and you'll 
find a machine with a personality. 

The ThinkPad 360Cs has the 
same basic exterior design as its fore- 
runners, the 350 and 750. The ma- 
chine is housed in a handsome, well- 
built black case, with black keys and 
a red pointing device. The most re- 
markable feature of the 360Cs is prob- 
ably its keyboard, which it inherits 
from the earlier 350 and 750 ma- 
chines. The layout is the best of any 
notebook on the market. Almost all 
the keys are full-size, and there are 
two Ctrl and Alt key pairs on either 
side of the space bar, as well as ded- 
icated F1-F12 keys, cursor control 
keys (in an inverted T), and Page Up 
and Page Down keys. The only thing 
you give up with this keyboard is a 
separate numeric keypad. 

The 360Cs uses IBM's TrackPoint 
pointing device, which looks like a lit- 
tle red eraser between the G, H, and 
B keys combined with two red but- 
tons positioned on the edge of the 
case. After using a 747 full of porta- 
ble trackballs, I'm convinced that the 
TrackPoint is the best portable point- 
ing device going. It takes some get- 
ting used to, but it offers greater con- 
trol than most small trackballs, and it 
takes up far less room. 

The 360Cs's keyboard is remarka- 
ble in another way, To access the ma- 
chine's internals, you unlatch the key- 
board and lift it up. Underneath, you'll 
find the floppy drive, which can be re- 
moved and replaced with a second 
battery or wireless communications; 
the hard drive, which can be upgrad- 
ed; and a section in the middle 
where you can insert memory up- 
grade IC cards. 

Moving to the display, the dual- 
scan screen is unusually large — 9.5 
inches diagonally — and very bright. 
As far as the quality goes, I've found 
that when you put the 360Cs's dual- 
scan display beside an active matrix 
machine, the screen suffers by com- 
parison. But when you look at the 
360Cs by itself, the color and quality 
are quite good. 

Another area where this computer 
really lights up a room is its power sup- 
ply. I know — power supplies are bor- 
ing, but once you see this one, you 
may change your tune. The ma- 
chine's small power brick is on the 
end of the cord, rather than in the mid- 
dle, and the power prongs are retract- 
able. What a great idea! 

The 360Cs has ports galore. A PC- 
MCIA Type III slot leads off a list that 
includes parallel, serial, PS/2, exter- 
nal VGA, and proprietary bus expan- 
sion slots. 

The machines in this issue's Test 
Lab represent some real bargains, 
and compared with them, the 360Cs 
may be a little pricey. But its innova- 
tive design, superb keyboard and 
pointing device, and expandability 
may be worth the price. D 












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Clifton Karnes 


One of DOS 6's neatest fea- 
tures — especially for Windows 
users — is one you may have 
missed. It's Interlnk, and with 
it, you can transfer files from 
one PC to another and even 
create a miniature network. 

In this column, I want to talk 
about how to use Interlnk, but 
before you can use it effective- 
ly, you need to understand 
two terms: client and server. 
These two words define a re- 
lationship between machines, 
which is usually expressed as 
client/server. In this relation- 

With DOS 6's 

Interlink, you can 

turn two PCs 

into a client/server 


ship, one machine — the serv- 
er — provides information to 
the other — the client. In most 
cases, the server simply ap- 
pears to be one or more disk 
drives on the client computer. 
Interlnk establishes a client/ 
server relationship between 
two PCs, and when the two 
PCs are connected, the serv- 
er's drives appear as addition- 
al drives on the client. 

Before using the Interlnk pro- 
gram, you're going to need 
two PCs and some way to con- 
nect them. With Interlnk you 
can use either a null modem 
serial cable or a parallel-port 
cable that's designed for two- 
way communication. The par- 
allel-port cable is much faster, 
so try to find one of these. In 
fact, don't use a serial cable un- 
less you have to. 

After connecting the two ma- 
chines with the serial or paral- 
lel cable, decide which ma- 
chine is going to be the client 
and which is going to be the 
server. Let the machine you 


want to work on be the client. 
If you're connecting a desktop 
and a notebook, you'll usually 
want to make the desktop the 
client, since desktops gener- 
ally have better keyboards 
and monitors. Let's assume 
this configuration and make 
the desktop the client and the 
notebook the server. But you 
could easily reverse this con- 
figuration and accomplish the 
same thing; you'd just be work- 
ing from the notebook. 

Now for the software. First, 
on the notebook, go to DOS 
and run INTERSVR.EXE. This 
DOS executable turns the note- 
book into a server. Next, on 
the client, you'll need to add 
one of the following lines to 
your CONFIG.SYS file: DE- 

After adding the line, reboot 
the client (desktop) PC. It's 
best to run the server program, 
INTERSVR.EXE, before running 
the client device driver. 

After booting the client PC, 
you'll have a new client drive for 
each of the server's hard and 
floppy drives (CD-ROM drives 
are not supported). These new 
drives are available in DOS and 
Windows, but since we're most- 
ly interested in Windows, I'll con- 
centrate on it. 

In Windows, run File Manag- 
er on the desktop computer 
(the client), and you'll see the 
new drives listed in the Drives 
drop-down list box. Now, take 
a look at the server's screen. 
You'll see a list detailing 
which server drives are 
mapped to which client 
drives. When you access the 
server, an asterisk flashes be- 
side the drive that's being 
used. Note that the server 
can't do anything else but act 
as a server — multitasking of 
any kind is out. Its entire be- 
ing is now focused on giving 
you everything you ask for. 

To test your new client/serv- 
er relationship, copy some 
files from the notebook to the 

desktop. Next, try copying in 
the other direction. If you're us- 
ing a parallel cable, the trans- 
fer should be pretty fast. 

Next, find a Windows EXE 
on the server's hard disk — like 
directory) — and double-click 
on it. You'll run the program. If 
you want to make sure that 
you're really running Calc 
from the server, temporarily 
change the name of 
the client's CALC.EXE to 

You're probably starting to 
get the idea that this client/serv- 
er thing is a relationship worth 
cultivating. Instead of dumping 
your notebook in the closet 
when it's not being used, you 
can, for example, leave it per- 
manently linked to your desk- 
top as a server. Use it to store 
some extra files you don't have 
room for on your hard disk (as- 
suming there's room on the note- 
book's drive). 

Or you can simply link the 
machines when you need to up- 
date one or the other. The im- 
portant thing about this relation- 
ship is that with Interlnk, either 
machine can be the client. 
You simply decide which com- 
puter you want to work on and 
make that one the client. 

Is there any situation where 
you'd want to make a note- 
book the client? Yes, there's 
an important one. You see, In- 
terlnk not only makes a server 
PC's drives available to anoth- 
er PC but also makes the serv- 
er's parallel ports available. 
You can, for example, con- 
nect the notebook to your desk- 
top and print using the desk- 
top's printer. Naturally, the 
desktop will need to be con- 
nected to a printer, which may 
be tough if you're using your 
only parallel port for your In- 
terlnk connection. Oh, well. 
You can't have everything. 

For more information on In- 
terlnk, look up interlnk, IN- 
TERLNK. EXE, and Intersvrin 
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Quesiions?Call 1-800-695-4005. 
Send e-mail to 
Circle Reader Service Number 161 


Edited by Robert Bixby 

Embedding printer 

codes, crossing 

wires, counting to 50, 

avoiding the 

letter Y, finding really 

big tiles, 

buying a wave-table 

sound card, 

and downloading our 

llc-tac-toe game 

Sneaker Net 

In the office where I work, 
there are several printers with 
varying capabilities, and the 
nature of my job has me util- 
izing different printers from 
day to day. In addition, I use 
simple word processor and 
spreadsheet programs, as 
they are the simplest to use in 
going from printer to printer. 
This brings me to the prob- 
lem. Sometimes I want to 
make use of printer capabili- 
ties that aren't supported by 
the software. Is there a simple 
way to embed command 
codes in text to make use of 
these printer codes? 


In a word, no. There's no sim- 
ple way to embed printer com- 
mands in ASCII text files. But 
that's no reason not to do it. 
The difficult thing is getting a 
list of codes that the printer re- 
sponds to. There are two 
ways to do this. You can ei- 
ther get the printer manual 
and look up the codes for 
what you want to do or print a 
formatted document to disk us- 
ing a word processor that sup- 
ports the special formatting 
you want to use and then ex- 
amine it for the codes by us- 
ing an ASCII file viewer or by 
using Type to type the file to 
the screen. 

Most printers use the Esc 
character (ASCII character 
27) to notify the printer that 
the characters that follow are 
not characters to be printed 
but a command to the printer. 
The Esc character might be fol- 
lowed by a 6 to turn on bold 
text. Then, later, you might en- 
ter an Esc character followed 
by an N to return to normal 
text. The tough part will be en- 
tering the Esc character. Press- 
ing the Esc key probably 
won't do it. Instead, you'll 
have to turn on the Num 
Lock, hold down the Alt key 
and type 027 on the numeric 

keypad to enter the Esc char- 
acter (check your word proc- 
essor manual to be sure). 

Remember that most spe- 
cial formatting has to be 
turned off once it's turned on. 
If, for example, you turn on 
underlining in the beginning 
of a long report and forget to 
turn it off, the whole report 
will be underlined. 

Fried Chips 

In the July "Hardware Clinic," 
Mark Minasi writes, "The 
white wire connects the hot 
side of the wall outlet to the 
power switch. , . . The black 
wire connects the return side 
of the wall outlet to the power 
switch." In fact, these connec- 
tions are the other way 
around. The black wire is al- 
ways the hot lead, and the 
white wire is always the com- 
mon or return lead." 

In the June "Hardware Clin- 
ic," Mark Minasi writes, "I can't 
wait to pop [a DX4] in my 33- 
MHz 486DX server and watch 
it fly." Watch it fry is more like 
it. Intel was quick to point Out 
that the DX4 is a 3.3-volt chip 
while the DX is a 5-volt chip. Al- 
though voltage regulators are 
available to provide the proper 
voltage for the DX4 t they aren't 
intended to be installed by 
end users. Don't buy a DX4 ex- 
pecting to just pop it into your 
DX2 socket unless you like the 
smell of burning silicon. 

Also, the toll-free number 
for ARES Microdevelopment 
was left out of the July "News 
& Notes" column, under the 
heading A Multimedia Brute. 
It's (800) 322-3200. 


When a 50 Is a 50 

Is Sprite's 486-50 a true 486- 
50? What's the difference be- 
tween DRAM and SIMM 
chips (besides the price)? 
Could I use an old Commo- 
dore model 1702 monitor 
with my AT, using an RGB vid- 

eo card? If so, would software 
requiring an EGA or a VGA 
monitor work with it? 


You should check with Sprite 
to find out which chip was 
used. Intel has made a full- 
fledged 486DX-50, but most 
50-MHz 486s are actually 
486DX2-50s. There's actually 
not much difference in perform- 
ance. The 486DX-50 has an 
iCOMP rating of 249, while the 
486DX2-50 has an iCOMP rat- 
ing of 231. DRAM chips (actu- 
ally called DIPs in the trade — 
for Dual In-line Package,) are 
set in sockets in the mother- 
board, and SIMMs (Single In- 
line Memory Modules) are set 
in special brackets. They are 
not interchangeable. SIMMs 
are much easier to upgrade 
and replace. Actually all PC 
memory chips are DRAM (Dy- 
namic Random Access Memo- 
ry), but DIPs are generally 
called DRAMs. 

A quick search of the COM- 
PUTE equipment graveyard 
didn't yield a 1702 monitor, 
and I don't remember whether 
it includes an RGB input. If 
yours has a D connector, it 
will probably work with your 
CGA. (I assume you're refer- 
ring to CGA when you say 
"RGB video card,") Some 
CGA cards include a compos- 
ite output, which you could con- 
nect directly with the compos- 
ite input on the 1702. The main 
problems you'll have will in- 
volve software. You'll probably 
have problems running most 
modern software with CGA. 
Windows Bnd other software 
that requires EGA or VGA proba- 
bly won't work with CGA, 
though text-based software 
will probably run properly 

Make RM Work 

I'm having trouble getting 
your RM.BAT program to 
work (from the December 
1993 issue). After typing it in, 



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I keep getting fast-moving lines of the 
letter Y. I think the culprit is the piping 
symbol. I don't think you're supposed 
to type it in. Can you assist me in this? 


Richard C. Leinecker replies: The line 
that's giving you trouble is ECHO Y I 
DEL % 1. The piping symbol is be- 
tween two commands, the ECHO Y 
and the DEL % 1. The piping symbol an- 
swers the question by echoing the Y 
keypress to the question sometimes 
posed by the delete command, so you 
don't have to type it in every time. 

You must have the piping symbol in 
the line for this batch file to work cor- 
rectly. Type in all batch files, Debug pro- 
grams, and BASIC programs exactly 
as they appear in "Tips & Tools. " 


I want to locate all the really big files 
on my hard disk in order to get rid of 
them. How can I do that? 


/ usually clear directories rather than 
files, wiping out whole applications and 
their document files. I have been 
known to clear 50MB in a few minutes 
with this technique. However, there may 
be huge files hidden away in your direc- 
tory structure that you could get rid of 
and save some space. Here's a BASIC 
program that identifies all files above a 
certain size (you could easily write a 
batch file that performs similarly). 


SHELL "dir\\* /s>\tempfile" 

OPEN "Mempfile" FOR INPUT 

OPEN "\tempfil1" FOR OUTPUT 

AS #2 

LINE INPUT #1, a$ 
IF VAL(MID$(a$, 13, 10)) > 

bigfile THEN 
PRINT #2, a$ 

As you can see, by changing the value 
of bigfile from 1000000 to some other fig- 
ure, you can make the program search 
out files that are of any size. Run the pro- 
gram using QBASIC and type tempfiH 
to see a list of all of the files on your 
hard disk that are larger than 1 million 
bytes in size. Most of these will be ap- 
plications, but you'll occasionally find a 
scanned bitmap or other data file of 

enormous size, if you can live without it 
(or copy it to a floppy), you can use 
that space for other purposes. 

Doomed XT 

I'm considering getting a hard disk for 
my XT, but local dealers are asking 
$400-$600 (Canadian) for a hard disk 
and controller, which is expensive, con- 
sidering that the computer is worth 
about half that. Do you know where I 
could get a hard disk for less? 


/ don't know where you'd buy a new 
one for less, but you might advertise. 
Someone might have an old hard disk 
lying around and be willing to sell it for 
not very much money just to get rid of 
it. On the other hand, consider this: If 
you buy a good IDE hard disk with 
large capacity and quick access, you 
could eventually swap that hard disk in- 
to a more modern PC, should you de- 
cide to purchase one later on. That 
would turn the hard disk into both a 
boon in the present and an investment 
in the future. 


Never say "never." I read with interest 
your reply in "Feedback" in March to 
the question by Jason Black asking 
how to get INKEY$ to accept input of 
function keys. I've been doing it for 
years. In fact, INKEY$ can be used to 
read every key on the keyboard. 
Here's a program that uses the 




F1, F2, Down Arrow, Up Arrow, 

PgUp, PgDn, Home," 
PRINT "End, Esc, and Enter have 

been programed in. Any other 

key pressed will" 
PRINT "print the ASCII Character 

Codes needed for programing 

them in. But be" 
PRINT "forewarned that pressing 

any control keys might result in" 
PRINT "an action you don't want. 

(Use with caution!) Press ESC to 


PRINT "Press Any Key" 

|$ = "" 

DO WHILE !$ = "" 
I$ s INKEY$ 

LOCATE 23, 1 





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Circle Reader Service Number 311 


CASE IS = CHR$(0) + CHR$(48)'Alt 


PRINT "You pressed ALT + B" 
CASEIS = CHR$(0) + ";"F1 
PRINT "You pressed F1" 
CASE !S = CHR$(0) + "<"F2 
PRINT "You pressed F2" 
CASE IS = CHR$(0) + "P"'Down 

Arrow Pressed 
PRINT "You pressed the Down 

CASE IS = CHR$(0) + "Q" 'PgDn 

PRINT "You pressed Page 

CASEIS = CHR$(0) + "O'"End 


PRINT "You pressed End." 
CASEIS = CHR$(0) + "H'"Up 

Arrow Pressed 
PRINT "You pressed the Up 

CASE IS = CHR$(0) + "l"'PgUp 


PRINT "You pressed Page Up." 
CASE IS = CHR$(0) + "G" 'Home 


PRINT "You pressed Home." 
CASEIS = CHR$(13)'Enter 



PRINT "You pressed Enter." 
CASE IS = CHR$(27)'Esc pressed 
PRINT "You pressed ESC. Do you 

want to quit? (Yfl)" 

ll$ = UCASE$(INPUT$(1)) 
IFII$="Y" OR ll$ = "N" THEN 


IF 11$ = "Y" THEN END 

LOCATE 23, 1 
PRINT "("; l$; ") KEY = CHR$("; 

LTRIM$(STR$(ASC(I$))); ")"; 
PRINT " + "; CHR$(34); 

CHR$(SCREEN(23, 3)); CHR$(34); 
PRINT " Or CHR$(0) + CHR$("; 

SCREEN(23, 3))))); ")" 


/ am most grateful for your correction 
and your ingenious solution. And 
thanks, also, to the many others who 
wrote to correct me. 

Mini Maxi MIDI 

I'm considering buying a sound card, 
and I'm definitely going to buy a wave- 
table sound card. I want one with a 
DSP and a SCSI interface, but I have 
a few questions. Are all wave-table 
synthesizers compatible (Aria, Ensoniq, 
Pro Sound, ADI, and Oak Mozart)? 


David English, our multimedia guru, re- 
sponds: In theory all the wave-table 
cards should be General MIDI compati- 
ble. With DOS programs there might 
be some quirks, but with Windows pro- 
grams they should work the same — 
though they wouldn't sound identical. 

The wave tables themselves would 
distinguish the cards. Some might 
sound rich, others mellow, and still oth- 
ers tinny depending on the quality of 
the instrument sampled, the recording 
technique, and the technology used 
for playback. 

Tic Tac 

This month's extra program is mainly for 
fun. Some time ago, I received a letter 
from a person who, for whatever reason, 
wanted to create a tic-tac-toe game and 
was having trouble doing so. In re- 
sponse, I wrote this month's program — 
a program that plays tic-tac-toe against 
you. Although it's virtually impossible to 
beat the computer, I did build in a frail- 
ty that will allow you to beat it if you 
make the right moves. See if you can 
find the program's vulnerability. 

To find the program, click on the 
Tips & Tools button in the COMPUTE ar- 
ea of America Online. Locate the Sep- 
tember "Feedback" column and dou- 
ble-click on its listing. The column will 
open up. Simply copy the program out 
of the column into QBASIC and run it. 
Or you could compile the program us- 
ing QuickBASIC. Have fun. 

Remember that every month you'll 
find something extra in the COMPUTE 
area of America Online that wouldn't fit 
in the magazine— extra tips, extra 
tools, extra columns, and sometimes 
an extra feature. 


Do you have a question about hard- 
ware or software? Or have you discov- 
ered something that could help other 
PC users? If so, we want to hear from 
you. Write to "Feedback" in care of 
this magazine. Readers whose letters 
appear in "Feedback" will receive 
a free COMPUTE baseball cap while 
supplies last. We regret that we 
can't provide personal replies to 
technical questions. O 

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Tony Roberts 

Doskey automates 

writing batch 

tiles, makes macros, 

and speeds your 

command line work. 



Doskey is a command line ed- 
itor that's included with DOS 5 
and above. If you don't have 
Doskey installed and you do 
any work at all at the DOS 
prompt, you're missing out on 
an incredible tool. 

Simply type doskey to in- 
stall the program or, better yet, 
include the command DOS- 
KEY /INSERT (to turn off over- 
strike) in your AUTOEX- 
EC.BAT file. 

To use Doskey, press the 
up- and down-arrow keys to 
move through a list of previous- 
ly issued DOS commands. 
When you find one you want to 
reissue, just press Enter. 

Have you ever made a typo 
while entering a long path and 
filename? When DOS tells you 
it can't find the file you've speci- 
fied, just press the up-arrow 
key to recall the bad com- 
mand, and then use the left- 
and right-arrow keys to move 
to your typo. Make the correc- 
tion and press Enter again, 
and your command will be 
executed without any further 

Although command line re- 
trieving and editing are Dos- 
key's most useful features, 
this program has other tricks 
up its sleeve. 

Doskey also permits the cre- 
ation of DOS macros which 
can be loaded into memory 
and executed as required. 
One of the provisions of the 
macro feature makes a useful 
command line resource: issu- 
ing multiple commands on a 
single command line. 

Let's look at how a macro is 
created. The following line cre- 
ates a macro we'll call Tidyup. 
This macro copies all of the 
DOC files in the current subdi- 
rectory to another subdirecto- 
ry for safekeeping; then it re- 
moves all the BAK files from 
the current subdirectory. 



Executing this command 
creates a new command 
called Tidyup, which will car- 
ry out both the copy and the 
delete functions at the same 
time. This command will stay 
in memory until Doskey is 
turned off or the computer is 
reset. Note the paragraph sym- 
bol (H) that separates the two 
commands. This symbol, en- 
tered using the key combina- 
tion Ctrl-T, is used to tell 
where one command ends 
and another begins. 

Even if you don't use Dos- 
key to create macros, you 
can use the Ctrl-T separator 
to enter several commands 
on a single command line. I of- 
ten pop out of Windows and 
use this feature when I need 
to perform a series of time- 
consuming tasks. For exam- 
ple, a couple of times a 
week, I need to download sev- 
eral large PostScript files to 
my laser printer for proofing. 
Since these files usually are 
2MB-3MB in size, this proc- 
ess can take a while. Then I 
compress the PostScript files 
into archives that fit on a sin- 
gle floppy disk. 

To handle this chore, I use 
the Ctrl-T separator to enter 
all of the necessary com- 
mands onto one command 
line; then I can go to lunch or 
to a meeting, leaving the com- 
puter to handle the work 
while I'm away. The com- 
mand I use looks something 
like this. 


If you ever find yourself wait- 
ing for your DOS prompt to 
come back, try using this fea- 
ture to issue all of your com- 
mands at once. 

Another interesting feature 
of Doskey is that you can use 

its command line history func- 
tion to create a batch file 
from a series of commands 
you've just issued. 

Batch files are quick and 
simple, but if you've ever writ- 
ten one, you know how easy 
it is to leave out a step. Using 
Doskey ensures that com- 
mands will be entered in the 
correct sequence. 

Let's say you've just 
stepped through a complicat- 
ed series of commands to per- 
form a function and you real- 
ize that you're going to have 
to repeat that function regular- 
ly. Perhaps this is a monthly 
or quarterly routine that you'd 
like to automate. 

You can view your entire 
Doskey command line history 
by typing doskey /history. You 
can capture that same history 
to a file; redirect the output to 
a file by typing doskey / 
history > routine.bat. 

Once the command line his- 
tory has been captured in a 
file, use the DOS Edit pro- 
gram or another text editor to 
edit out any unwanted com- 
mands in the text file, includ- 
ing the last line, which will be 
the command you issued to 
create the batch file. 

Before you save your 
batch file and put it away un- 
til you need it next quarter, be 
sure to add some documenta- 
tion so that you can remind 
yourself how, and under what 
conditions, to execute the pro- 
gram. Do this by adding a 
few REM statements to the 
file. Any line in a batch file 
that begins with REM is con- 
sidered to be a remark and 
will not be executed by the 

If you know ahead of time 
that you're going to want to 
capture a series of com- 
mands from the Doskey histo- 
ry to a batch file, press Alt-F7 
before you begin. This clears 
the Doskey history buffer so 
you can start your recording 
with a clean slate. rj 

began to fade away with the 
advent of 3y 2 -inch 200MB hard 
drives, faster parallel ports, and 
PCMCIA (see "PCMCIA Card Ex- 
pansion" section below) network 
cards. So why the comeback? Mul- 
timedia. Docking stations allow 
users to easily hook up a CD- 
ROM drive and a sound card 
with stereo speakers. All you do 
is slide the notebook into the dock- 
ing station, and you've got a full- 
featured computer, complete 
with expansion slots. 

PCMCIA Card Expansion 

In 1989 the PCMCIA (Personal 
Computer Memory Card Interna- 
tional Association) was formed to 
solidify hardware standards and 
software interface requirements 
for removable memory cards and 
their receptacles. 

There are currently three PC- 
MCIA card formats: Types I, II, 
and III. All three formats measure 
54 mm (2.13 inches) by 85,6 mm 
(3.37 inches). Type I cards are 3.3 
mm thick, Type II cards are 5 mm 
thick, and Type III cards are 10.5 
mm thick. Any card will fit into its 
own type slot or a larger type slot. 
The PCMCIA standard also speci- 
fies connector configurations so 
that you can plug and unplug the 
cards in an active, or hot, slot. 

Theoretically, PCMCIA cards 
are interchangeable among all 
machines that support the stan- 
dard and card type (I, II, or III). 
However, this has not proved to 
be the case. The technology is 
still maturing, and, apparently, ven- 
dors aren't doing extensive tests 
of one another's cards. Depend- 
ing on the kind of PCMCIA card 
you are trying to use, you can 
expect different levels of compat- 
ibility. Fax modems seem to be 
the most compatible, with SCSI 
cards being the least compatible. 
As PCMCIA technology matures, 
you'll do well to use cards manu- 
factured by the maker of your note- 
book. This isn't possible, of 
course, if your manufacturer 
doesn't provide an option. If you 
buy a third-party PCMCIA card, 

make sure you get a money- 
back guarantee. 

All but one notebook in this 
roundup, the Texas Instruments 
TravelMate 4000e, supports 
PCMCIA card technology, 
though types supported vary 
among the others. The Travel- 
Mate lets you use conventional 
internal or external devices for 
modems and a docking station 
for other expansion options. 
When looking at a notebook com- 
puter, consider whether you'll ben- 
efit from PCMCIA expansion. 

Color on the Road 

Color really is a necessity. Win- 
dows practically demands color — 
especially on portable displays. 
Otherwise, it's just too difficult to dis- 
cern small objects. There are two 
major types of color screens: ac- 
tive-matrix and passive-matrix. 
Active-matrix provides the best, 
clearest display and truest colors. 
But it's expensive. As long as man- 
ufacturing yields on active-matrix 
screens remain low, prices will 
remain high. For the frugal buyer, 
dual-scan passive-matrix technol- 
ogy — in which the top and bottom 
halves of the screen are refreshed 
independently at twice the normal 
refresh rate — provides an excel- 
lent alternative to the high end. 
Dual-scan screens deliver richer 
colors with less smearing than sin- 
gle-scan passive-matrix screens. 
All of the computers in this 
review have dual-scan, passive- 
matrix screens, another reason 
vendors can bring them to you for 
so low a price. 

Review Criteria 

Our criteria for participation in 
this review were simple: Give us 
a dual-scan passive-matrix note- 
book with a hard disk larger than 
120MB and with a street price 
less than $2,500. In addition to 
the above criteria, we also asked 
vendors to equip each notebook 
with 8MB of RAM. The BAPCo 
tests contain a WordPerfect for 
Windows session that does not 
run reliably in 4MB RAM (which is 

the standard configuration for 
most notebooks). In some cases, 
the extra 4MB RAM kicked the 
price over our $2,500 cutoff. If 
you're not running memory-inten- 
sive applications, however, 4MB 
of RAM is sufficient. 

The seven vendors here were 
the first to meet our requirements. 
However, many other manufactur- 
ers had new machines in devel- 
opment but couldn' t meet our dead- 
line. Notebooks from Ambra and 
Compaq arrived too late to be in- 
cluded in this roundup, but you'll 
find stand-alone reviews of these 
products in the Reviews section of 
the magazine. By the time you 
read this, there will be many fast 
color 486s available. 

Our Tests and Evaluation 

To test the speed of these com- 
puters, we used the Business 
Applications Performance Corpo- 
ration (BAPCo) test, discussed in 
the sidebar "Our Testing Proce- 
dure." While speed is important to 
all computer users, it is more impor- 
tant to some. Graphics artists, for 
example, require more brute proc- 
essing power than word process- 
ing and spreadsheet users. When 
looking over the speed-test re- 
sults, weigh them against the oth- 
er features and options offered 
with each notebook. 

In addition to performing speed 
tests, I also carried these 
machines around for a while and 
used them to do some of my daily 
work. Included in the review are 
some of my not-so-scientific obser- 
vations about the notebooks, I eval- 
uated the keyboard layout, the clar- 
ity of the display, energy-saving 
utilities, ease of use, and battery 
life. The following reviews combine 
descriptions of conventional 
speed and battery life test results 
and my humble, subjective obser- 
vations. You'll also want to check 
out the Features table for side-by- 
side comparing. Now's a great 
time to buy a color notebook, and 
the facts, figures, and analysis in 
Test Lab can help. 





Built around the Intel 486DX2-50, 
the Austin notebook is the sec- 
ond fastest computer in this 
review, second only to the Mid- 
West Micro Elite. The Austin per- 
formed particularly well on the 
graphics test, with a whopping 
SYSmark score of 131. In fact, it's 
the 131 graphics performance 
that kicks it into the second- 
place spot. And if that's not 
enough to recommend it, at 6.3 
pounds, it's also one of the light- 
est of these machines. You get all 
this power without wearing out 
your shoulder! 

Speed isn't the only thing to rec- 
ommend this computer, though. 
For the $2,499 price tag you get 
a 262MB hard disk and a 256- 
color display. Frankly, I was 
quite impressed with the colors 
and clarity on this computer, 


With computer technology chang- 
ing more rapjdiy than ever before 
and with options more plentiful 
than ever before, computer prices 
can be a tricky business. 

It pays to keep the following 
points in mind: 

Computers are available in a 
variety of configurations, each 
with a slightly different price. Also. 
because of the rapid changes in 
this market, a computer manufac- 
turer may change system compo- 
nents, software, or prices between 
the time a review is written and the 
time the magazine hits the stands, 

Remember, too, that you're buy- 
ing support in addition to the com- 
puter. Find the support policy that 
meets your particular needs. 

At COMPUTE, we make every ef- 
fort to verify prices. This month, un- 
less we note otherwise, the price 
that appears with each review is for 
the review configuration. It's a good 
idea, however, to call the manufac- 
turer or vendor to make sure that the 
configuration you want matches the 
price you have in mind. 



Austin Dual Scan Power 
Direct price: S2.499 
Warranty; one year 

(8001 752-1577 (U.S.) 
(8001 338-1565 (Canada) 
(512) 339-3550 [overseas] 

Pros: fast performance; lightweight; 

large hard disk; great buy for 

graphics, layout, and 

Cons; hard-to-mantdutate trackball 

even though it has only a 9.5- 
inch screen (measured diagonal- 
ly). You also get a graphics adapt- 
er that can display resolutions up 
to 1280 x 1024 on an external 
monitor. I connected it to my 20- 
inch Sony Multiscan HG and was 
impressed with the quality. How- 
ever, you won't get true color out 
of this one's graphics adapter, as 
you can with the MidWest Micro 
Elite; and you don't, of course, 
get the speed of a Windows ac- 
celerator. But if you're working 
with true-color images, you 
shouldn't be thinking about using 
a notebook, anyway. 

Expansion options include a PC- 
MCIA slot that can accept either 
one Type III card or two Type II 
cards, which means you can run 
two cards, say a modem and 
tape backup, at the same time. 
Austin also offers a docking sta- 
tion, a high-capacity NiMH bat- 
tery for prolonged road time, and 
a sound card. With the sound 
card and a SCSI PCMCIA card to 
connect a CD-ROM drive, you 
can have multimedia on your desk- 
top from your portable. And this 
computer is fast enough to han- 
dle multimedia reasonably well. 

One of the few things I don't 
like about the Austin notebook is 
its small, front-mounted trackball. 
For me, the device's position (in 
the middle below the keyboard) 
makes accessing it a little awk- 
ward, and I find it too small to 
manipulate with ease. Trackballs 
are convenient to use when you 

can move the ball with your 
thumb and click with a finger. I 
think that the best trackball for 
this type of operation is the side- 
mounted Microsoft BallPoint 
shipped with the Toshiba Satellite 
and Texas Instruments Travel- 
Mate. The one on the Austin is eas- 
ier to get to if you use your mid- 
dle and index fingers. If you use 
your pointing device often, as I 
do, this seems a little unnatural. 

Another small problem is the 
Austin documentation, which is 
not as extensive as the documen- 
tation for some of the others. For 
example, there's no index to help 
you find specific topics. And the 
illustrations are hand drawn and 

These minor inconveniences 
aside, this is a hot computer. If 
you don't need true-color display 
capabilities, it has a lot to recom- 
mend it. You'll especially like it if 
you need a lot of power for, say, 
working on graphics at home and 
writing letters on the road. 

Circle Reader Service Number 371 

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inches). The DX2-40 CPU 
placed it just within our cutoff 
price. However, you can get the 
same machine with a DX2-50 or 
a DX4-75 chip in the same con- 
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the ColorBook are its slim 1.7- 
inch depth and its incredibly 
light case. Picking it up and car- 
rying it are a breeze. However, its 
light construction also raises 
some concerns about its sturdi- 
ness, as does the slight hard 
disk rattle when you start the ma- 
chine or after the drive has sat 
idle for a while. But then Gateway 

Gateway 2000 ColorBook DX2-M 
Direct price: $2,495 with 4MB RAM, 
S2.764 Willi 8MB RAM 
Warranty: one year 

(8001 046-2000 

Pros: lightweight, large hard disk, 
inexpensive external keyboard and 
monitor package 

Cons; tiard-to-manipulate trackball, 
construction thai feels a bit flimsy 

warrants the ColorBook for a 
year. If anything's going to go 
wrong, it'll happen before then. 

While Gateway does not sell a 
docking station for the Color- 
Book, the company does offer 
what it calls a Combo Pack, 
which consists of the famous Gate- 
way CrystalScan monitor and 
AnyKey keyboard. Gateway also 

offers a PCMCIA SCSI card for 
connecting to CD-ROM drives 
and removables, as well as a 
PCMCIA tape backup unit. 

Speaking of monitors, you can 
connect the ColorBook to a 
1024 x 768 display for one of 
the clearest displays I've seen 
from a notebook's external 
SVGA. You can also operate 
both the ColorBook's screen and 
an external monitor at the same 
time, which is ideal for presenta- 
tions. I teach PageMaker classes 
from a notebook that cannot use 
its display and an external 
source at the same time. It's a 
real hassle having to operate the 
pointing device with my neck 
craned to see the same screen 
the audience uses. 

I didn't find the ColorBook's min- 
uscule trackball very effective. At 
first I was impressed with the way 
it tucks unobtrusively under the 

Qranted, speed is not the single 
most important consideration when 
you're shopping for a notebook com- 
puter, but some people really need 
a lot of horsepower. Besides, it's 
always interesting to compare com- 
puter speeds. To test the notebooks 
in this month's roundup, we used the 
Business Applications Performance 
Corporation's (BAPCo) SYSmark93 
benchmarks. The tests run a series 
of Windows applications in six catego- 
ries. The categories and applica- 
tions are as follows: 

Word Processing 

WordPerfect 5.2, Word for Windows 

2.0, Ami Pro 3.0 


Lotus 1-2-3 4.0 for Windows, Excel 

Paradox 1 .0 

Desktop Graphics 
CorelDRAW! 3.0 

Desktop Presentations 

Freelance Graphics 2.0, PowerPoint 



Desktop Publishing 
PageMaker 5.0 

The computers are graded with SYS- 
marks. As you can see, the note- 
books turned in scores between 35 

Overall SYSmarks 









and 140 SYSmarks. These scores 
are compared to the calibration sys- 
tem, which is a 33-MHz 486-33 with 
8MB RAM. The calibration system 
runs at 100 SYSmarks. As the tests 
show, only one of these notebooks, 
the Elite, runs as fast as or faster 
than the calibration system 

Notice also (from the other 
charts) that some of the notebooks 
are more adept at certain types of 
applications than others. Think 
about the kinds of uses you would 
have for a notebook and then look 
for one that meets your needs. If you 
need an overall business machine, 
select one that performed strongly 
across the board. 

The BAPCo software is currently 
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call the company at (408) 988-7654. 

Circle Reader Service Number 378 




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machine, but my fascination was 
short-lived. Its small size and 
position made it difficult for me to 
manipulate, and for me, it just 
didn't control the cursor very 
well. I had to do a lot of fiddling 
around to get the pointer to coop- 
erate. According to Gateway, 
this problem has been solved 
with the installation of textured 
balls for better traction. The im- 
proved traction should certainly 
remedy part of the problem. 

One real advantage of the Col- 
orBook is its excellent documen- 
tation. Not only is the hardcopy 
manual well illustrated and easy 
to read and follow, but there is 
also an online Help file that cov- 
ers the notebook well, pointing 
out key features and providing 
useful information on using the ma- 
chine. While this notebook isn't as 
fast (it ranked third on our tests) 
and fancy as some of the others, 
it's a good buy and has some fea- 
tures to recommend it. It's ideal 
if you do presentations on the 
road often. 

Circle Reader Service Number 372 


Now here's a powerful, feature- 
rich notebook for the bargain hunt- 
er. Built around a screaming 75- 
MHz 486DX4, the MidWest Micro 
Elite flew past the others in our 
speed tests. It's as much as four 
times faster than the slowest of 
the bunch. And, in addition to 


MidWest Micro Elite Dual-Scan 
Color SountiBook 
Direct price: $2,499 
Warranty: one year 

(BOO) 728-8582 

Pros: really fast performance, very 
large hard disk, true-color 
external monitor support, built-in 
sound, ergonomic wrist support, 
tremendous value 

Cons: hard-to-manipulale trackball 

DX4-75 processing power for un- 
der $2,500, you also get several 
extras not found in any of the oth- 
er machines reviewed here. 

The Elite comes with built-in 
sound capabilities. You can use its 
small speaker or plug stereo speak- 
ers into the back. With the Elite, all 
you need is a SCSI PCMCIA card 
with a CD-ROM drive, and you're 
multimedia complete. But the real 
beauty of having a sound-ready 
notebook is that you can include 
sound in your presentations for the 
road and show them anywhere, 
even the restaurant table during a 

power lunch. You can also use the 
built-in record function to narrate 
your presentations. 

Another terrific feature of the 
Elite is its built-in true-color graph- 
ics card that shows 16 million or 
32 thousand colors at 640 x 480 
resolution. It can also drive high- 
resolution monitors up to 
1280 x 1024. However, you 
won't want to run it that high for 
very long; the flicker can vibrate 
your eyes out. The Elite uses a 32- 
bit local bus adapter for external 
video, but it doesn't support high 
refresh rates. 

MidWest Micro offers a dock- 
ing station for $499 and a car 
adapter that lets you use and 
charge the unit in your vehicle. 
I'm not big on working in my car, 
but it is nice to be able to charge 
the battery between appoint- 
ments. And if you're really a high- 
tech sort, you'll get a big kick out 
of sending faxes from your car cel- 
lular phone. 

It's difficult to find something to 
knock this computer for, but here 
goes. It has a tiny (16-mm) track- 
ball set into the front wrist rest. 
(By the way, this is the only 


You really can't go wrong with any 
of those computers. Unless you 
work with high-end graphics or mul- 
timedia applications, all will serve 
you well. However, a couple of 
these notebooks do stand out as 
exceptional values. What you buy 
depends, of course, on how you'll 
use it. 

The hands-down 
high-end winner 
is the MidWest 
Micro Elite Dual- 
Scan Color 
You just 
can't beat 
this deal, 
and it will handle all 
of your computing projects — even 
multimedia. MidWest Micro offers a 
docking station, but this computer's 
expansion options, built-in sound 
card, and true-color display capa- 

bilities put it head 
and shoulders 
out in front of the 
others reviewed 
here, especially 
those that 
sell for the 
same price. 

If you need a 
computer for the road, don't want to 
spend a lot, and don't require a tre- 
mendous amount of graphics horse- 
power or 256 colors for presenta- 
tions, check out the Satellite 
T1910CS from Toshiba America In- 
formation Systems, it displays only 
16 pure colors, but it's fast for an SX 
and has a great trackball. Overall, 
this is a sturdy machine, and Toshi- 
ba offers a number of expansion 
options. However, there isn't a dock- 
ing station, so you should consider 
it only as a travel system. 



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machine here with an ergonomic 
wrist support, which can prevent 
the carpal-tunnel-causing effects 
of excessive keyboard banging.) 
While the trackball is not as 
tough on the wrist as the Gate- 
way and Austin models (as well 
as some of the others not dis- 
cussed yet), it's still not as easy 
to use as the BallPoint. It doesn't 
really lend itself to the thumb- 
forefinger action I'm used to, but 
it's workable. 

This is the ideal notebook for 
anyone who computes on the 
road. It's fast, has sound, comes 
with its own carrying case, sports 
a big hard drive (340MB), boasts 
reasonably good battery life (I got 
just under three hours with nor- 
mal use), and is a great bargain. 

Circle Reader Service Number 373 


The Packard Bell Statesman is 
built around the 486SLC2-50, 
which is an SX chip with power- 
saving features but no math 
coprocessor. In our tests, the 
Statesman lagged far behind the 
others, especially the DXs, but 
then speed isn't everything. This 
is an economy model and plenty 

Packard Bell Statesman Plus 200C 
Estimated street price: $2,295 with 
4MB RAM, $2,695 With 8MB BAM 
Warranty: one year 

(800) 733-5858 

Pros: relatively lew cost, good 

Cons: comparatively slow 

performance, no trackball, limited 

external monitor support 

of computer if your on-the-road 
computing needs are average. 

What 1 particularly like about 
the Statesman is its sturdy con- 
struction. Strong and solid, it 
looks as if it can take a beating. 
It also has an attractive LCD 
screen that displays 256 colors in 
much brighter and truer tones 
than some of the others reviewed 
here. You can hook it up to an 
SVGA monitor and achieve a res- 
olution of 800 x 600 with 16 col- 
ors. With a Type II PCMCIA slot 
(and an SCSI card to go into it), 
this notebook offers plenty of op- 
portunity for expansion. 

Another plus when purchasing 
Packard Bell products is that they 
are sold and supported virtually 
everywhere. Repair centers are 
numerous, and parts, such as 
batteries and memory, are easy to 


find. And since this is a depart- 
ment- and electronics-store item, 
pricing competition is fierce. Pack- 
ard Bell says the estimated street 
price is $2,295 (with 4MB of RAM), 
but I've seen this model in a local 
discount warehouse for $2,000. 

There are a couple of things I 
didn't like about this machine. 
One, it supports a mouse, rather 
than a trackball. Granted, I've 
knocked trackballs right and left 
in this roundup, but when you're 
on a plane, park bench, or the 
beach, mice are a nuisance. 
Trackballs seem to be the indicat- 
ed pointing device for notebooks. 
However, Packard Bell address- 
es this problem by providing a so- 
lution called J-Mouse. A software- 
hardware solution, the J-Mouse 
allows you to use the keyboard as 
a pointing device. Keys on the typ- 
ist's home row become direction- 
al keys, and the J key is the pri- 
mary mouse (or "click") key — 
hence the name J-Mouse. This is 
a peculiar solution that takes a lot 
of getting used to. 

Two, Packard Bell doesn't of- 
fer its own expansion options for 
this machine, which means you'll 
have to depend on third-party 
PCMCIA devices. Be sure to get 
a warranty when you buy these 
devices because they're part of 
a still-maturing technology. 

Packard Bell specializes in 
entry-level computers, and the 
documentation reflects this mar- 
ket strategy. The manual with the 
Statesman is clear and helpful, 
but it doesn't provide a lot of tech- 
nical information. If you need a 
graphics workhorse, this isn't the 
one to buy. But it's great for word 
processing, small databases, 
and spreadsheets. It's easy to 
use and inexpensive. 

Circle Reader Service Number 374 


Built around a screaming 50-MHz 
486DX2, this is a fast (fourth in the 
speed test), capable machine. 
However, its lack of a PCMCIA 
slot makes it less than ideal for 
some applications. Modems and 
memory upgrades must be in- 
stalled in the conventional manner, 
by opening up the computer. (Tex- 
as Instruments does offer an exter- 
nal modem.) But if you're looking 
for a computer strong on graphics, 
this one flew on that portion of our 
speed tests. 

The TravelMate's 10-inch dis- 
play supports up to 256 colors, 
and you can hook up a high-res- 
olution monitor for up to 
1280 x 1024 resolution with 16 
colors. The computer is small and 
light, and all of the controls and 
indicator lights are easy to find. 
(Some of these machines are so 
fancy that you can't figure out 
how to turn them on without go- 
ing to the manual.) 

My favorite feature on this 
machine, other than the fast per- 
formance and great display, is 
the side-mounted Microsoft Ball- 
Point pointing device. Granted, 
it's not built into the computer, 
and you must carry around an 
additional piece of equipment. 
But it's a joy to use — especially if 
you do a lot of mousing around in 
your documents. The BallPoint is 
designed so that you can manip- 

Tex as instruments TravelMate 4000e 
WinDX2/50 DSC 

Estimated street price: $2*500 with 
4MB RAM, $2,700 with 0MB RAM 
Warranty: one year 

(800) TI-TEXAS 

Pros: fast performance, 
large screen, great colors 
Cons: No PCMCIA slots 

ulate the ball with your thumb and 
click with your forefinger. Your 
wrist doesn't have to go through 
any unnatural gymnastics for you 
to use the pointer. 

OK, so you're thinking that 
you'll just buy a BallPoint for your 
notebook. Well, it's not that easy. 
The computer must have a facto- 
ry-installed jack on the side, 
called a QuickPort, to use this ver- 
sion of the BallPoint. Of all these 
notebooks, only the Toshiba and 
Texas Instruments support the 
QuickPort version of the BallPoint, 
which, as the name suggests, is 
quick and easy to attach or de- 
tach. (Microsoft does offer a Ball- 
Point, however, that plugs into a 
serial or PS/2-style port.) 

While most of these machines 
had similar battery performances, 
this one lasted longer than the oth- 
ers — a whopping 3.15 hours. If 
you're like me, you can't work long- 
er than that on any flight, no mat- 

Toshiba Satellite T1 91 ffCS 
Estimated street price: $2,099- 

$2,199 with 4MB RAM, $399 more 

With 8MB RAM 
Warranty: one year 

(800) 334-3445 

Pros: reasonably last perfor- 
mance, great trackball, 
great bargain 

Cons: tack ot 256-color 
support at 640 ■ 480, 
relatively small bard drive 

ter how long the trip. 

Texas Instruments makes 
good products, and this one is no 
exception. I especially liked the 
manual, which goes into great 
detail about configuring the note- 
book and installing hardware and 
software. The manual also covers 
most of the expansion options, 
such as the $399 docking station, 
the SCSI expansion card, and 
even the battery charger/discharg- 
er The discharger is a great idea, 
because the nicad batteries that 
these computers use last much 
longer if you fully discharge them 
now and then, which is difficult in 
the notebook. 

OK, so this machine is a little 
behind the times in expansion op- 
tions. You still can't buy a more 
durable, dependable computer. 
It's fast and easy to use, and it's 
backed by a great company. 

Circle Reader Service Number 375 


The Toshiba Satellite runs a little 
slower than some of the other note- 
books and is not as feature rich, 
but it's a good value. Toshiba 
says it has a street value price of 
around $2,100, but I saw it at a 
local computer discount store for 
less than $2,000. For that price 
you get a completely functional 
computer with respectable speed 



and PCMCIA expansion options. 

Off the bat, this is one of two 
computers in our roundup (Texas 
Instruments is the other) with the 
QuickPort version of Microsoft's 
BallPoint pointing device, making 
it a breeze to use. However, the 
Satellite keyboard is a bit 
strange. The Alt, Ctrl, and Del 
keys aren't where you'd find 
them on most keyboards, which 
means you'll find yourself looking 
for them until you get used to 
their peculiar placement. 

Toshiba offers a wealth of 
expansion options, including 
PCMCIA modems and memory. 
I tested both and found them 
easy to install and highly compat- 
ible. However, they are quite 
expensive if you order them 
through Toshiba. The 4MB mem- 
ory card, for example, sells for 
$399, as compared to MidWest 
Micro's $219. Modems and other 
options are equally expensive. 
You'll be better off experimenting 
with third-party options or looking 
for a Toshiba dealer. 

Another drawback is the 
T1910CS's lack of support for 
256 colors on an external moni- 
tor. And though it supports 256 col- 
ors on the LCD screen with 
320 x 200 resolution, the other 
notebooks support 256 colors at 
640 x 480. With only 16 colors at 
640 x 480 on the screen or an 
external monitor, this is not a 
good graphics machine, and I 
would use it for only the most 
rudimentary presentations. I 
would not, however, hesitate to 
take it on the road for word proc- 
essing, faxing, and E-mail. 

This computer comes with sev- 
eral manuals, an online tutorial, 
and several utilities, including a 
nifty power monitoring and man- 
agement program and a Win- 
dows-based application for man- 
aging PCMCIA cards. The surpris- 
ing thing about this machine is that 
it has the slowest processor here 
but still runs faster than two of the 
others. This is probably due to 
Toshiba's superior design and a 
good hard disk. Also, the display 


Twinheari SUmnote 4B6E 486DX/33S 
Estimated street price: $2,495 with 
4MB RAM, $2,695 with 8MB RAM 
Warranty: one year 

(800) 995-8946 

Pros: large ham dish, good 

expansion options 
Cons: lack of high-resolution 

external monitor support, second 

slowest performance 

system does not have to spend 
time generating a lot of colors. 

All this is not to say the Satel- 
lite is a bare-bones machine. It pro- 
vides more expansion options 
than the faster Texas Instrument 
offering. However, since it's an 
SX rather than the power-miser 
SL, battery life isn't anything to 
rave about. In my normal-use 
tests, the battery lasted just over 
two hours, which means you 
might want to carry an extra bat- 
tery pack when you're traveling. 

Granted, this is not a power 
user's computer. But, hey, it's 
quite appropriate for on-the-road 
computing. Consider this one if 
you're happy with your desktop 
machine and need something 
dependable and convenient to 
take on the road. 

Circle Reader Service Number 376 


The Twinhead 486E comes in sev- 
eral configurations up to a DX2- 
66. The one I looked at was a 
33-MHz DX. While it's the second 
slowest computer here, it's still a 
solid buy. You get a good com- 
puter with decent expandability 
at a good price. One thing I par- 
ticularly liked was the Slimnote's 
thin 1.8-inch case — hence the 
name Slimnote. 

While there is nothing particu- 
larly exciting about this machine, 
it does have everything you 
need, such as 256 colors, a VGA 
port, and all the trimmings. The 
Slimnote's docking options are 
also impressive. When you get 
back to the office, you don't have 
to waste time plugging in a mon- 

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itor, keyboard, and printer; 
instead, you can use Twinhead's 
I/O Slice. The I/O Slice, Twinhead's 
port replicator, connects to the 
docking station plug on the 
Slimnote, automatically connecting 
all your devices, even the modem. 

Twinhead also offers a full-fea- 
tured docking station with two 
drive bays, a battery charger, 
and three 16-bit bus slots so you 
can add sound, CD-ROM, and oth- 
er devices to your notebook. 
There's also a PCMCIA Type II 
slot for other expansion options. 
And there is an optional 14.4- 
Kbps internal modem. The bene- 
fit of using an internal modem 
with this machine is that it frees 
up the PCMCIA card slot for oth- 
er options. 

I've got the same complaint 

about the Slimnote's trackball 
that I have with some of the oth- 
ers' trackballs, though. This one 
is up on the panel in front of the 
screen, and the button is on the 
right, which is different from any- 
thing I've seen or used. I had a 
tough time getting acclimated to 
reaching there and using the but- 
ton to the right. I could live with 
this pointing device but wouldn't 
like it much. 

The Slimnote also supports 
simultaneous LCD and CRT dis- 
plays, making it good for presen- 
tations. It weighs only 6.3 
pounds, so carrying it around 
won't break your back. The 
200MB hard drive is also respect- 
able. With that much storage, you 
can wait much longer before feel- 
ing the need to compress the 

data on your hard disk to make 
room for more. 

Sleek, light, and powerful are 
words that describe the Slimnote. 
While its lack of high-resolution 
external display disqualifies it as 
a graphics and layout desktop ma- 
chine, it's a suitable road warrior. 

Circle Reader Service Number 377 




"Do you have one so simple even a parent could beat it?" 



Tom Campbell 

Windows' fake 

multitasking relies on 

all the programs 

running to be willing 

to interrupt 

themselves at crucial 



It's more important than ever 
to spend your learning time 
wisely. With the advent of Win- 
dows and a few killer apps 
like Excel, FoxPro, and Win- 
Word, people's expectations 
have risen. And writing good 
Windows software in C takes 
a lot of work. 

One way you can make the 
most of your learning time is to 
restrict your programming to 
the Win32 API, a set of conven- 
tions that will allow your pro- 
gram to run properly under Win- 
dows NT, Windows for 
Workgroups, Windows 3.1, 
and the upcoming Windows 
4.0 (or Chicago, or whatever 
it's going to be called). This is 
a more significant achieve- 
ment than you might think. 

Windows 3.1 is essentially 
a 16-bit operating system with 
memory management that 
takes some advantage of the 
386's 32-bit design. Windows 
for Workgroups is an exten- 
sive retooling of Windows 3.1 
with a rewritten file system 
that also requires a 32-bit proc- 
essor. Windows NT looks al- 
most nothing like Windows 3.1 
internally and has scores of 
new function calls, but the old 
ones will work with a little re- 
writing and judicious use of 
some new macros. Windows 
4.0 will resemble Windows NT 
internally much more than Win- 
dows 3.1. 

When DOS changed, there 
were often serious compatibil- 
ity problems, some of which 
were never properly resolved. 
It seems quaint now, but it 
took years for some applica- 
tions to adapt to the change 
from the floppy-disk, no-directo- 
ry file system in DOS 1 to the 
subdirectories in DOS 2. The 
primitive file system in DOS 1 
lives on today in DOS 6, total- 
ly useless except for the tens 
of thousands of older applica- 

tions that use the old function 
calls for file access. 

Even more painful has 
been the transition to net- 
worked computers beginning 
with DOS 3 in 1984. You don't 
have to be a network user to 
be affected, either: Visual Ba- 
sic 3.0 Professional won't let 
you use its own native files 
(the Access file format) unless 
Share is running, but its own 
Setup Wizard doesn't work 
properly with Share. Omitting 
network features in the operat- 
ing system was a horrible mis- 
take on IBM's part, especially 
considering that this company 
was collecting vast sums of 
money from its customers in 
the name of connectivity, 
which meant that you paid ex- 
tra—a lot extra — for the privi- 
lege of getting computers us- 
ing IBM's disparate operating 
systems to work together. 

Finally, there's a crying 
need for real multitasking in pro- 
fessional application develop- 
ment. Again, you may not 
think you need multitasking. 
That's because you haven't 
used an advanced operating 
system like Windows NT — or 
AmigaDOS. The Amiga has 
boasted a preemptive multi- 
tasking OS for years, and it 
means among other things 
that Amiga users almost nev- 
er wait for the hourglass: not 
while formatting a disk or 
while waiting for an applica- 
tion to start or while saving a 
two-megabyte file in a word 
processor. While Windows 
does a good job of fake multi- 
tasking, it relies on all the pro- 
grams running to be willing to 
interrupt themselves at crucial 
times. They don't always do 
that, and it can be a real pain 
to write them that way. 

Win32 gives you all these 
things and a great deal more. 
While some of its features are 
faked in its Windows 3.1 and 
Windows for Workgroups imple- 
mentations, you can still use 
the Win32 API to get your pro- 

grams ready for Windows 4.0. 
Better, they will work with future 
versions of Windows with virtu- 
ally no changes. One of the 
main reasons is that an int, 
which up until Windows 3.1 
was often assumed to be two 
8-bit bytes with the more sig- 
nificant byte first, has become 
32 bits. That's bad for compat- 
ibility. Stick to the Win32 pro- 
gramming guidelines, and that 
problem goes away. Seeming- 
ly innocuous data types such 
as int and long have been re- 
placed with more precise mac- 
ros such as WORD and 
DWORD. This will pay off later, 
when Windows moves to 64-bit 
processors and beyond. 

Ready to sell your software 
to users in Israel or China? 
Good, but if you don't use 
Win32 guidelines, you won't 
be able to take advantage of 
Unicode and the new Win- 
dows text-handling routines. 
Hebrew goes from right to 
left. Chinese goes from top to 
bottom. Try writing those text- 
handling routines yourself. 
The Hebrew alphabet is 
about the same size as ours, 
but Chinese requires at least 
5000 characters, a tad too 
many for the 255-character AN- 
Sl limitation. Unicode gives 
you a cool 64K of new charac- 
ters (actually, only about half 
are assigned at this point, but 
they already represent virtual- 
ly every language known to 
the world's computer users). 

Win32 uses the new 
TCHAR type natively; some 
clever macros route the appro- 
priate text-related calls to new 
entry points. The Microsoft 
Win32 manuals are worth the 
$100 they'll cost you over the 
street price of $400 or so for 
a CD-ROM-only edition of Vis- 
ual C++, but they don't cover 
the Microsoft Foundation Class- 
es. That's the best way for you 
to get Win32 compliance if 
you're a C + + programmer, 
and it's a lot easier than pro- 
gramming in C. n 


Dominate the mind. . . 

e world! . 




■ ■■■■ 

1 ■ f 

■ ■■ 



Back when they were known as the USSR, they 
conducted over fifty years of research into 
manipulating the forces of Extra Sensory 
Perception (ESP\ The product ~ 

if their research, the pgY$H©TRQN 

3 sychotronic Generator is sold 
.o the government of the United 
States. Somewhere en route to 
the U.S.A. it vanishes, and now , 
it's up to you to find it! 


• The Psychotro n has more than an hour of video 
for Windows 3 " and dozens of incredibly detailed 3- 
D animation sequences] 

Windows'" based platform provides standardised 
operating environment for quick set-up and play! 

• Revolutionary scoring system allows multiple 
players to participate together in the interactive 

• Dialogs are interactive as well, creating a new 
experience each time you play! 

• Enlarge video windows to full screen any time 

• High production values including a cast of profes- 
sional actors and an original music score bring 
you the world of The Psychotron! 

. tfUfnf mJlJ Thu Pfctyflhettti 

# Merit Sofa 

Dallas, Texas 800-238-427 


Edited by Richard C. Leinecker 


windows, alarming 


double-sided printing 

in Word 


Lock Your Windows 

These tips are for users of Win- 
dows 3.1. Mainly, they're in- 
tended for people who want 
to restrict users from doing 
too much on their systems. 
Network administrators could 
use these tips to prevent staff 
members from doing things 
that might mess up their set- 
ups or cause problems. Of- 
fice managers could use the 
tips to prevent employees 
from using their computers for 
unauthorized purposes. 

Many times, people move 
program groups around and 
then can't find the applica- 
tions or files they need. Pro- 
gram groups are the windows 
that contain the icons for the 
programs and files with 
which you run your Windows 

It can be annoying when 
you let someone use your com- 
puter and then can't find any- 
thing the next time you run 
Windows. There's a way to pre- 
vent people from changing 
group files. 

Begin by making sure you 
know the names of the group 
files you want to protect. If 
you're not sure, you can find 
out by making a window ac- 
tive and selecting Properties 
from the Program Manager 
File menu. It'll show you the 
group path and filename in 
the second editable field in 
the dialog box that appears. 
Once you know the file- 
names, quit to DOS. 

Make sure you're in the di- 
rectory containing the group 
files (it's almost always the Win- 
dows directory). For each 
group you want to protect, 
type attrib filename. grp +r. 
The Attrib command makes 
the file read-only when you 
use the +r switch. That 
means that Windows won't be 
able to update the file and 
that changes to the group win- 
dow information won't be 
saved to disk. 

If you ever want to change 


the disk information, use the At- 
trib command from DOS. 
Type attrib filename. grp -r to 
remove the read-only attribute 
from the directory flag. 

You can also set some re- 
strictions by editing the PROG- 
MAN. INI file. The first thing 
you'll need to do is add the 
line [restrictions] to the PROG- 
MAN. INI file (if it doesn't al- 
ready exist). This tells Win- 
dows that system restrictions 
will follow. 

By the way, any changes 
you make to the lines in the 
PROGMAN.INI file won't take 
effect until the next time you 
run Windows. 

Here's a list of useful items 
you can add: 

NoRun=1 disables the Run 

NoClose=1 disables the Exit 
Windows command. 

NoSaveSettings=1 disables 
the Save Settings on Exit 

NoFileMenu=1 removes the 
File menu from Program 
Manager's main menu. 

Editl_evel=0 sets no restric- 
tions on Program Manager 

Editl_evel=1 prevents creat- 
ing, deleting, and renaming 
of groups. 

Editl_evel=2 includes level 1 
restrictions and prevents 
creating and deleting items. 

Editl_evel=3 includes level 2 
restrictions and prevents 
changing command lines for 
program items. 

Editl_evel=4 includes level 3 
restrictions and prevents 
changing any program item 


Intruder Alarm 

I read with interest the tip 
from Rebecca Libby on intrud- 
er alerts in the October 1993 
issue. After installing this on 
my computers, I found that I 
did not like the fact that I had 
to exit by issuing a Ctrl-Break 
after the alarm sounded. It 
dumped me into the QBASIC 
program ALARM. BAS and 
stopped the loading of the 
rest of AUTOEXEC.BAT until I 
exited that program. 

I modified the program to 
terminate when I press the 1 
key, even after the screen 
turns red and the alarm 
sounds. My modified program 
follows. An indented line is a 
continuation of the preceding 

100 F0RX = 1 TO 12: PRINT: 


120FORX = 1 TO 12: PRINT: 


130 PLAY "MN L8 03 T75" 
140 FOR X = 1 TO 10 
150 PLAY "C4" 
160A$ = INKEY$ 
170 IF ASo'T' GOTO 190 
190 NEXT X 
200 SCREEN 1 
210 COLOR 4, 15, 15 
220FORX = 1 TO 11: PRINT: 

230 PRINT SPACE$(10); 

250 PRINT SPACE$(6); "Yankee 

Intruder Detected!!!" 
260FORX = 1 TO 11: PRINT: 

270 A$ = INKEY$ 
280 IF A$ = "1" GOTO 180 
290 FOR X = 440 TO 1000 STEP 




Even Odds 

I thought Farid Ahmad's tip 
for a Microsoft Word macro to 
print odd or even pages was 

a good idea ("Tips & Tools," 
April 1994). I have one that 
works even better. I've used it 
quite a few times. 

<Shift Ctrl EscxEso 


«SET ECH0="0FF"» 

<Ctrl PgDn> 

«SET choice=0» 

«WHILE choiceol AND 


«ASK ehoice=?1.odd or 2.even» 
<Ctrl EsoJP 
«SET maxpage=field» 
«SET count=choice» 
<<WHILE count<=maxpage» 
«SET ECH0="0N% 
<<MESSAGE Printing page «count» 

of «maxpage»» 
«SET ECH0="0FF"» 
<Shitt Ctrl EsoPO 
<Down 4>P 
<Enter 2> 

«SET count=count+2» 
<Shift Ctrl EsoPO 
<Oown 4>A<EnterxEsc> 

Type this in, highlight the en- 
tire text, activate the Copy 
command, and give the mac- 
ro a name such as ODD- 
EVEN. MAO<Ctrl P>E. This 
will allow the user to activate 
the macro by pressing Ctrl-R 
then E. Be sure to quit Word 
with the Quit command so 
that the glossary containing 
the new macro will be saved. 


Check Your Zip 

I have found your publication 
very informative ever since I 
began purchasing it back in 
October 1991. Although I en- 
joy most of the magazine, 
"Tips & Tools" remains my fa- 
vorite column. I've always en- 
joyed creating and modifying 
files, especially batch files. 

I have some of my own cre- 
ations that I'd like to share. 
They simplify several tasks I 
perform frequently. They all re- 

quire that PKUNZIP be in 
your path. 

Here's VZIP.BAT It views 
the contents of zip files quick- 
ly. To use it, type vzip file- 
name. The filename should 
not have an extension. 


IF "%1"=="" GOTO USAGE 


ECHO Viewing "%1. zip" 


ECHO Reading "" 

ECHO Please wait . . . 




ECHO Usage: VZIP [filename] 

ECHO You can use wildcards 

in the filename, 
ECHO but make sure there is 

no ZIP extension. 


Here's TZIP.BAT It checks 
the integrity of zip files quick- 
ly. To use it, type tzip file- 
name. The filename should 
not have an extension. 




ECHO Testing "" 


ECHO Reading "" 

ECHO Please wait . . . 




ECHO Usage: TZIP [filename] 

ECHO You can use wildcards 

in the filename, 
ECHO but make sure there is 

no ZIP extension. 



Bonus Programs 

This month's bonus programs 
will appeal to a wide variety 
of people. One is a Windows 
program that produces chaos 

music through a Sound Blas- 
ter, and the other is a set of li- 
brary files for QuickBASIC 
that will let you play SND, 
VOC, and WAV files through 
your Sound Blaster from your 
own BASIC programs. 

Chaos Music is a Win- 
dows program that lets you 
set a wide variety of parame- 
ters and explore the world of 
chaos through music. Sever- 
al chaos theories can be cho- 
sen to produce different 
types of music sequences. 
You can adjust the pitch 
range, dynamics, and meter 
of the six available music voic- 
es. I can't release the docu- 
mentation, since it's a chap- 
ter in a book I wrote called 
Making Noise. But the pro- 
gram is easy to use, and 
you'll have fun with it. 

If you love to write QuickBA- 
SIC programs and have a 
Sound Blaster card, here's 
your chance. A set of libraries 
and example programs will 
give you what you need to 
play sound files through your 
Sound Blaster card. A num- 
ber of functions give you plen- 
ty of power to dress up your 
programs like the pros. You 
can even record sounds and 
play them back. 

The "Tips & Tools" bonus 
programs are available in the 
COMPUTE area on America 
Online. Just click on the but- 
ton marked Software. 


If you have an interesting tip 
that you think would help oth- 
er PC users, send it along 
with your name, address, and 
Social Security number to 
COMPUTE'S Tips & Tools, 
324 West Wendover Avenue, 
Suite 200, Greensboro, North 
Carolina 27408. For each tip 
we publish, we'll pay you $25- 
$50. All tips submitted be- 
come the property of General 
Media International. n 

Viewing your 
zipped files and 
looking up 
the bonus programs 



Mark Minasi 


A TechNet 
subscription can 

solve your 

system problems and 

save you money. 


This month I want to tell you 
about a not-to-be-missed serv- 
ice that supports Microsoft 
products. But first, some com- 
ing attractions. 

In the next few months, I in- 
tend to talk about networking. 
Networks have become so in- 
expensive and so attractive 
that most small businesses ei- 
ther have one or are thinking 
about getting one. Some peo- 
ple are even considering a net- 
work for their homes, accord- 
ing to the E-mail I'm getting. 
Therefore, starting next month 
I'll begin telling you all about 
affordable networks. 

Now let's talk about Micro- 
soft support. Like most of you, 
I do a lot of work with Micro- 
soft products. They can be 
big, ugly, complicated 
beasts, but they are also pow- 
erful, which is why I use them 
in the first place. Unfortunate- 
ly, Microsoft (like many other 
companies) is facing some se- 
rious problems with customer 
support. Getting help with Mi- 
crosoft products has grown 
tougher with each passing 

This is not intended to be a 
criticism of Microsoft — at 
least not entirely. If you buy Mi- 
crosoft Office, a package that 
contains Word for Windows, Ex- 
cel, PowerPoint, and Mail, 
you'll pay about $300 for four 
powerful pieces of software. 
It's hard for any company, Mi- 
crosoft included, to sell soft- 
ware for $75 a copy and have 
enough margin to pay for 
phones, computers, and peo- 
ple to staff a support service. 
As a result, it's tough to get Mi- 
crosoft support on the phone. 

For some products, you 
can't get Microsoft on the 
phone at all unless you're will- 
ing to pay. For example, if you 
have NT Advanced Server, Mi- 
crosoft's flagship network op- 


erating system, the only num- 
bers you can call are an 800 
line, where you'll have to 
come up with a credit card 
number before anyone will 
help you, or a 900 number. 
Each call you make costs 
$150. That's not a typo. 

Besides phone lines, Micro- 
soft provides support in many 
other ways. It offers profession- 
al seminars, white papers, its 
various Resource Kits, and 
something wonderful called 
the Knowledge Base. I can 
best describe why the Knowl- 
edge Base is so wonderful 
with a quick story. 

A couple of years ago, I 
was teaching a Windows tech- 
nical support class for a big cli- 
ent. One participant asked 
this question: "When I exit Win- 
dows, my machine hangs. 
The drive light runs for a sec- 
ond, but the blinking cursor 
stays up in the corner after 
that, and the PC doesn't do 

"Is it a PS/2?" I asked. 

She said that it was a PS/2, 
so I told her, "Try adding the 
FALSE to your SYSTEM.INI, in 
the [386enh] section." 

She went to her machine at 
lunch, inserted the line, and re- 
turned to report success. 

She had a PS/2-type 
mouse, and Windows tried to 
reset it on exit, as it always re- 
sets mice when you exit. A PS/ 
2 mouse, however, can take a 
minute or two to reset, making 
the system look as if it has 
hung. If she had waited a cou- 
ple of minutes, the Windows re- 
set routine would have been 
completed. But who wants to 
wait two minutes to get out of 
Windows? No one. So Micro- 
soft included a command in 
IT, that can tell Windows not to 
bother trying to reset the 
mouse. The downside is that 
not resetting the mouse can 
make the mouse not work 
right in DOS applications after 

you've exited Windows. 

The company had placed a 
few techie guru types in the 
class to make sure I didn't say 
anything wrong — they were 
slumming, you might say. 
They grabbed me at the next 

"Where'd you find out 
about that mouse command?" 
they asked. "It's not in any 
book we ever read, it's not in 
the Windows documentation, 
and it's not in the Windows Re- 
source Kit." I was tempted to 
tell them that I'd discovered it 
while running a protected 
mode debugger on the Win- 
dows kernel or some other 
kind of bafflegab, but I 
'fessed up. 

"I found it in the Knowledge 
Base," I told them. 

The Knowledge Base is an 
insanely large database of all 
the bugs found in Microsoft 
products and the fixes and 
work-arounds Microsoft has 
found for them, along with use- 
ful tips and tricks. It's so large 
that a search for articles relat- 
ed to Windows for Work- 
groups yields 1075 hits. It's 
not the final word on all Micro- 
soft products, but it's mind- 
bogglingly useful. 

Now how, you may ask, do 
you find this Knowledge 
Base? One way is to get onto 
CompuServe and type GO 
MSKB. (And once you're in the 
Knowledge Base, you can re- 
ally run up a tab searching it.) 
The Knowledge Base is so use- 
ful that for about six months 
back in 1992, I was using a 
communications program and 
a macro to download the 
whole thing and keep it on my 
hard disk. It took up all kinds 
of space, however, and was a 
real pain to keep up-to-date. 
Searching it was a chore, as 

The other way to get the 
Knowledge Base is to sub- 
scribe to Microsoft's TechNet 
service, a little tool I call my sor- 
cerer's apprentice. It's a serv- 

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TechNet replaces 
the various Windows 

resource hits, 
and you can search it 




ice that gives you about 16 CD- 
ROMs per year containing the 
entire Knowledge Base, any of 
Microsoft's white papers, the 
complete text (and most of the 
illustrations) of its Resource 
Kits, the course books that 
you'd get if you signed up for 
Microsoft's $1 ,500 seminars- 
including the PowerPoint 
slide show that the Microsoft 
instructors use — as well as 
conference proceedings, the 
text of Microsoft Systems Jour- 
nal, Microsoft FastTips, and cor- 
porate backgrounders. 

About once a quarter, Tech- 
Net comes on two CD-ROMS. 
The second CD-ROM is 
called Patches and Drivers. 
The March 1994 edition's 
Patches and Drivers disc is 
148MB of updated Windows, 
Windows NT, and DOS driv- 
ers, as well as "fixer" pro- 
grams. You could download 
them from CompuServe and 
pay big connect charges, or 
you could just slip this CD into 
your drive and get the file that 
you need. 

How expensive is it? The 
cost is $295 per year (plus 
$15 shipping and state sales 
tax; for more information, call 
800-344-2121). That's more 
than most home users can af- 
ford, but small businesses or 
even home-based businesses 
should consider TechNet 
when making software purchas- 
es. As I've indicated, just us- 
ing the March TechNet CD 
has saved me hours of Com- 
puServe connect time. 

It's even saved me hard 
disk space. Now and then I'll 
run across an updated driver 
that I don't need right now but 
that looks useful. So I down- 
load it, and it sits on my hard 
disk taking up valuable stor- 
age space. With TechNet, I 
just zap those old files and 
reach for the CD when I need 
an updated driver. The entire 
Windows NT Resource Kit 
costs around $100. There's no 
need to buy it (or the Windows 


Resource Kit or Windows for 
Workgroups Resource Kits) 
when you have TechNet, and, 
even better, you can search 
the books electronically. 

Let's try an example search 
of TechNet to get a feel for 
how it works. Suppose you 
have a Novell Netware net- 
work and you have the follow- 
ing problem. Sometimes — on- 
ly sometimes, which is the mad- 
dening part — you'll be work- 
ing in Windows, and you'll try 
to start up a DOS session. The 
screen clears so that the DOS 
session can start, and a blink- 
ing cursor appears in the up- 
per left corner of the screen. 
At that point, the system is lock- 
ed up. What should you do? 

Start up the TechNet soft- 
ware. On the opening screen, 
one of the menu options is 
Search, so click on that. A 
field marked Query: opens up. 
You want to see what it knows 
about Novell and DOS, so 
type in novell and dos. Click 
on the button marked Find, 
and the CD-ROM drive chugs 
away. The search program re- 
ports 812 articles found. Holy 
guacamole! That's way too 
much to look through! Typing 
novel! and dos located every 
article where the words Novell 
and DOS both appear, In- 
stead, I can type novell near 
dos, which will give me only 
those articles where the word 
Novell appears near to the 
word DOS. (What does near 
mean? By default, near 
means "within eight words." 
You can redefine nearlo what- 
ever distance you like.) 

This search narrows things 
down— to 238 articles. You'll 
see a dialog box that shows 
you a one-line description of 
each article, and you can 
then read each article online, 
or you can print it. If you see 
an article that looks interest- 
ing, you can put a bookmark 
in the CD-ROM reader soft- 
ware so that you can return to 
the article anytime you want. 

But still, 238 articles is a lot, so 
let's narrow it further. 

A check box labeled refine 
search allows you to type in 
new criteria and thus conduct 
a search within a search, 
Check that and ponder what 
keywords to use to narrow the 
search. This Novell problem is 
sometimes called the Black 
Screen of Death, so let's try 
the word black. Refining the 
search with black reduces the 
number of articles to a mere 
three. One article turns out to 
be about FoxPro developers, 
and Black happens to be the 
name of a FoxPro developer. 
The other two articles, howev- 
er, look promising. The title of 
the first is "System Hangs with 
MS-DOS Applications and Nov- 
ell NetWare." The document 
turns out to be several pages 
of information about the Black 
Screen of Death, with the fol- 
lowing suggestions: 

First, remove any extrane- 
ous TSRs and device drivers 
from your AUTOEXEC.BAT 
and CONFIG.SYS. (Every- 
body tells you to do that.) 

Second, don't load any pro- 
grams automatically on Win- 
dows startup. (Ditto.) 

Third, add the lines IN- 
10000 to your [386enh] sec- 
tion of your SYSTEM.INI file. 
(Somewhat more technical in- 

Fourth, get the latest Novell 

Fifth, replace your 
VIPX.386 and *vtd drivers 
with updated drivers, found 
right on the CD. 

I've tried this fix on a 
friend's machine that had the 
Black Screen of Death, and it 
worked. The search took 
about five minutes, and the 
TechNet software copied the 
files onto my hard disk for me. 

If you're a DOS, Windows, 
or NT support person, think 
about picking up TechNet. It'll 
turn you into a guru, D 

Open 24 Hours 

coming fall '94 

for PC CD ROIv: 

Mi'rii St 

•4J JUV 

You can make your financial 

dreams come true with the help of 

the right software. 


By David English 

Catchy title, huh? Now you 
expect me to tell you how to 
make a pile of money in practi- 
cally no time at all. Well, I'm going to 
tell you how to make a lot of money — 
and it's a sure thing— but it will take 
some years for it to work. On the other 
hand, because you'll be doing it the 
slow, proven way, your chances of 
success are virtually assured. But first 
a few facts. 

The first fact is about you: You're 
not saving enough money. I don't care 
if you're 20, 40, or 60, making 
$15,000, $55,000, or $155,000 a 
year— it's almost certain that you're not 
saving enough. I've read that most 
people in the workforce are only sav- 
ing at about 30 percent of the rate of 
previous generations. It's time to wake 
up. Who do you think is going to pay 
for your first house, your kid's educa- 
tion, and your retirement? Your par- 
ents and grandparents learned to 
save, and you can, too. 

I know — you're not making enough 
money now to save anything. Maybe 
later. Sorry, but it doesn't work that 
way. The longer you wait, the harder it 
will be to save those large sums of 
money. If you save $1,000 each year 
for 40 years and get a return of 10 per- 
cent each year, you'll have 
$486,851.81. If you wait 10 years to 
start, you'll have $180,943.42 in 30 
years. But if you wait 30 years to start, 
you'll only have $17,531.17 in 10 
years. While $17,531.17 may sound 
like a fair piece of change, it shrinks to 
a pittance when you factor in inflation 
and taxes. 

That's it for the sermon— you get 
the idea. So what can you do? Get 
money smart and do it right away — 
while you can still make a big differ- 
ence. Since you own a computer, one 
of the best things you can do is use 
your computer to help you save 
money. And that brings us back to the 
focus of this article. To help you save 
the money you'll need later in life, we'll 
look at three categories of money- 
smart software. 

• Personal finance programs 

• Investment programs 

• Retirement-planning programs 

With the help of these software 
packages, almost anyone can 
become more financially secure. 

Calling in a Specialist 

Personal finance programs grew from 
what used to be called checkbook 
programs. Today, these programs do 


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Personal finance programs like Quicken 
help you get control of expenditures. 

Learn to invest wisely with a program 
like Windows on WallStreet. 


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Planning is much easier when you 
have a tool like Rich and Retired. 

much more than help you balance 
your checkbook. They can balance 
multiple checkbook and credit card 
accounts, let you pay your bills elec- 
tronically, track a portfolio of invest- 
ments by downloading the latest 
prices from an online service, remind 
you to pay recurring monthly bills, let 
you access your bank accounts 
online, send your financial information 
directly to your tax program, and help 
you plan for your retirement. If you're 
just starting to put your financial house 
in order, there's no better place to 
start than with a personal finance pro- 
gram. By tracking and categorizing 
your spending, you can cut your 
expenses enough to start saving some 
money each month. 

The best-selling personal finance 
program is Quicken, which comes in 

three versions for the PC: Quicken 
(which is DOS based), Quicken for 
Windows, and Quicken for Windows: 
CD-ROM Deluxe Edition. Version 7 of 
Quicken for DOS and version 3 of 
Quicken for Windows share a similar 
feature set. Both have a Getting 
Started Guide and Qcards to help you 
begin the process of entering your 
financial data. Both let you type in a 
few characters of repetitive data and 
have the rest fill in automatically; both 
include graphs that let you understand 
visually where your money goes; and 
both can track checks, bills, bank 
accounts, credit card accounts, 
investments, loans, and savings bud- 
gets. The most recent versions include 
a stronger home inventory module, 
beefed-up financial-planning tools, 
and better investment tracking. 

An add-on package for Quicken for 
Windows, called Quicken Companion 
($34.95), features a tax estimator that 
you can use throughout the year; a 
stock price quote module that lets you 
go online to track your investments 
instantly; and a tips, tricks, and short- 
cuts section that can help you delve 
deeper into the program. Quicken for 
Windows: CD-ROM Deluxe Edition 
includes both Quicken for Windows 
and Quicken Companion, as well as 
The Wall Street Journal Video Guide to 
Money and Markets— CD Version 
(which helps you learn about different 
kinds of investments), The Wall Street 
Journal Personal Finance Library 
(which provides answers to common 
financial questions), Tradeline Elec- 
tronic Stock Guide (which contains 
one-page snapshots of over 6000 
stocks and market indexes), electronic 
versions of 20 U.S. government publi- 
cations that cover various aspects of 
personal finance, and the manuals for 
both Quicken for Windows and 
Quicken Companion in electronic form. 
I think it's fair to say that the CD-ROM 
version of Quicken is the single best 
personal finance program available. 

While Quicken is the best all-around 
personal finance package, there are 
other strong packages that have devel- 
oped their own special strengths. 
Managing Your Money has always 
been the leader among the personal 
finance programs in managing invest- 
ments. The current versions of the pro- 
gram are Managing Your Money: 1994 
Edition for DOS and the new Managing 
Your Money for Windows. 

Like Quicken, Managing Your 
Money can track your income and 



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expenses, pay your bills electronically, 
categorize your spending, and print 
your checks. However, Managing Your 
Money: 1994 Edition for DOS goes fur- 
ther than Quicken in helping you with 
your taxes (by including a data-linked 
Form 1040 and Schedules A through 
F), tracking your investments (by pro- 
viding an Asset Allocation Module, a 
Rental Properties Module, a Life 
Insurance Organizer, and more), and 
helping you plan for your retirement 
(by incorporating a Social Security 
Estimator, tracking your net worth his- 
tory, and providing useful tools to help 
you reduce your debt burden). If a rig- 
orous set of financial tools is more 
important than the superior ease-of- 
use features you'll find in Quicken, you 
should consider choosing Managing 
Your Money. 

Microsoft Money 2.0 also offers the 
usual account tracking, electronic 
payments, spending categorization, 
simple investment tracking, automatic 
data filling to help eliminate repetitive 
data entry, and a variety of reports 
with charts and graphs. In addition, 
Money has two unique features. The 
first is online banking, which lets you 
use your PC to view your bank and 
credit card account records and even 
transfer funds between accounts. 
(Unfortunately, you can't make cash 
withdrawals to your computer's print- 
er.) Currently, this outstanding feature 
can only be used with three regional 
banks (First Chicago Bank, Michigan 
National Bank, and U.S. Bank), though 
Microsoft is working to add other 
banks by the end of the year. The sec- 
ond unique feature, at least for a per- 
sonal finance program, is Microsoft 
Wizards, a set of interactive templates 
found in several Microsoft packages. 
In Money, the Wizards make it much 
easier to calculate a loan, plan a mort- 
gage, estimate interest, and calculate 

Kiplinger's CA— Simply Money 1.5 
(Computer Associates, 800-225-5224, 
$39.95) should be shipping by the time 
you read this. Like the other personal 
finance programs, it tracks various kinds 
of accounts, prints checks, lets you pay 
bills electronically, and generates 
dozens of reports. This latest version 
beefs up Kiplinger's Financial Advisor 
(with three times the advice found in ver- 
sion 1.0), adds three financial calcula- 
tors (Adjustable Rate Mortgage, Life 
Insurance, and College Costs), and 
offers improved check printing. 

MoneyCounts for Windows offers 


Death and Taxes 

The two things you can't avoid are 
death and taxes. However, you can 
make both easier to live with (so to 
speak) with specialized software 

Most tax programs— such as 
Intuit's TurboTax, MECA's TaxCut, 
and Parsons Technology's Personal 
Tax Edge — can import your relevant 
income and expense data from 
most personal finance programs 
and many financial-planning pro- 
grams. For example, Managing 
Your Money: 1994 Edition for DOS 
can export data for Form 1040 and 
Schedules A-F, while WealthBuilder 
can export data for Schedules B 
and D. Unless your taxes are overly 
complicated, you should consider 
doing your own taxes each year 
with the aid of a computer program, 
as the process of doing your own 
taxes can help you later in your 
financial planning. 

No one likes to think that he or 
she will die unexpectedly, but it 
happens. Now that you've used 
your personal finance, investment, 
and retirement-planning programs 
to figure what your assets are worth, 
you might as well go the whole dis- 
tance and figure who gets your stuff 
when you're gone. WillMaker 5 
(Nolo Press, 510-549-1976, $69.95) 
is the leading will-writing program, 
and the wills it creates are valid in 
every state except Louisiana. Even 
if you have, only a few valuable 
assets, a will can make the legal 
process much easier for those you 
leave behind. 

the usual set of checkbook and elec- 
tronic payment features, as well as a 
choice of five predefined sets of 
income and expense categories 
(home, business, farm, church, and 
rental property), a plain-English 
accounting guide, and a built-in 
Address Book/Mail List Manager. The 
program has a strong reports section 
that includes 22 predefined reports 
and more than 30 different 3-D charts 
and graphs. 

Is it really worth the trouble to main- 
tain a personal finance program by 
regularly typing in your checkbook 
and credit card information? To begin, 
you could go back 6-12 months and 
put the data in after the fact. Then you 

would be able to run reports immedi- 
ately and see the patterns in your 
spending and income. It took me 
seven hours to enter all of my financial 
data for the last eight months, but the 
time was worth it for me. The other 
strategy would be simply to begin with 
the next set of statements that comes 
from the bank and take it one month at 
a time. With this method, it would be 
months before you'd be able to run 
most of the useful reports, but the task 
wouldn't seem so daunting. Either 
way, you'll find that with each new 
month the value of your program will 
continue to grow. If you've ever won- 
dered where all the money goes, 
here's your chance to find out. 

Decisions, Decisions 

You've used your personal finance 
program to tame your wild spending 
habits and have even begun to put 
some savings away each month. Then 
you discover that the banks don't pay 
much interest on savings accounts, 
and you think you may be ready to put 
a portion of your savings into more 
rewarding investments. 

For general financial advice, you 
might turn to Charles J. Givens Money 
Guide. Givens offers advice from his 
three best-selling books, Wealth 
Without Risk, Financial Seif-Defense, 
and More Wealth Without Risk. There 
is a CD-ROM version as well as a flop- 
py-based Windows version. Both ver- 
sions contain over 70 financial appli- 
cations, worksheets, and figures; over 
800 answers to financial questions; 
and a financial section with 17 custom 
tools. The CD-ROM version adds 130 
video clips of Givens presenting his 
financial strategies. 

If you plan to do your own 
research, there are a number of online 
advisory and financial data services. 
One of my favorites is the Investor's 
Forum (type GO INVFOR) on 
CompuServe. There you'll find hun- 
dreds of investment-oriented pro- 
grams you can download, an active 
message area that's open to all 
(novices as well as experts), and 
many speciality sections, such as an 
area devoted to users of MetaStock 
(more about MetaStock shortly). 

Over on America Online, you can 
access the latest facts and figures on 
hundreds of mutual funds in the 
Morningstar Mutual Funds area (key- 
word: Morningstar), This respected 
publisher of mutual fund newsletters is 
putting the essential information from 

"No matter where you go... there you arel" 

Professor Irwin Corey 

"WealthBuilder is the best 
choice. . . offers specific 
advice on where to put your 
money, and can be used, via 
Reuters Money Network, to 
download on-line research 
and stock pricing data." 

— Forbes 

"This program is the 
choice for active 

— Family Life 

". , .The best program 

may be WealthBuilder, 

an all-purpose 

financial- planning 


— Business Week 

"All in all, there's no 

question that 

WealthBuilder is one of 

the best investment buys 

on the market." 

— Computer Shopper 



It's Smart 

The road to financial security has 
many obstacles. WealthBuilder* by 
Money Magazine helps you avoid 
the pitfalls and get you where you 
want to go — safely. It helps you 
iMpM^^ map out your financial future with 
B a Nobel Prize** winning Asset 
^^^^ Allocation model — the same 
^P*^ algorithms used by professional money 
managers. Retirement? College tuition? Home purchase? 
WealthBuilder creates a personalized strategy based on 
your goals, resources and investment philosophy. It even 
helps you figure out which investments to make and 
when to make them. Its like having your own personal, 
expert financial strategist. 

It's Connected 

Even the best strategy is useless — unless you act. That's 

why Reuters Money* Network, the world's leading online 

investment service, is included FREE with WealthBuilder! 

As your personal investment assistant, it 

effortlessly connects you to the quotes, 

news, fundamental research data, 

online brokers, and timely reports that 

you need, and much more. Plus, the 

customized alert system monitors the 

market for you — like a broker who 

never sleeps. All for a low, flat 

monthly fee with no connect time or 

other communication charges, so you can dial in as 

often as you like. 

It's Easy 

Almost 200,000 people already use 
WealthBuilder — it's that easy to install and use! A 
simple "interview" format asks the same questions that 
) a good financial planner would — about your resources, 
risk tolerance, obligations and even your dreams. 
Straight-forward suggestions, graphs and more show 
' you how to achieve your financial goals. The new 
Windows 1 " interface and integrated help screens will 
answer most of your questions. Friendly member 
service representatives help with the rest. 

It's Risk Free and 50% OFF! 

Order today and receive 3 special offers. First, get 
WealthBuilder for Windows™ (reg. $99.95) for the special 
introductory price of just $49.95 (plus $7.50 s/h) with a 
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Reuters Money* Network (reg. $24.95) absolutely FREE 
— and you get a FREE month of online membership. 

Plus, if you subscribe to Reuters Money* Network when 
you call, you can get a special 6-month introductory 
subscription to our basic plan — the Gold Plan — 
(reg. $119.40/year) for just $49.95. That's 7 months of 
membership for less than $7.14/month — for the best 
online investment service in the world! 
Like PC Magazine says: "You can't lose." 

Call TODAY! 


Ask for Limited Offer #4844 

Offer expires 1 1/9/94 A Renter Company 

WealthBuilder... The Best Way to Get There 

Circle Reader Service Number 306 

Quotes are 15 minute delayed. Personalized News Clipping Service is an option, available at $9.95/mo. Prices and specifications subject to change without notice. Versions available for 

Windows, DOS and Macintosh; certain technical requirements apply. ** The Nobel Committee has not yet reviewed or endorsed Reality's WealthBuilder by Money Magazine. 

"Reuters" is a registered service mark of Reuters Limited. * Money is a trademark of Time Inc. Windows is a trademark of Microsoft Corporation. 


Is there a feature topic you'd 

like to see covered 


Let us know by calling 

(900) 285-5239 

(sponsored by Pure 

Entertainment, 505 South 

Beverly Drive, Suite 977, 

Beverly Hills, California 

90212). The call will cost 95 

cents per minute, you must 

be 18 or older, and you must 

use a touch-tone phone. 

its newsletters online, including an 
overall rating, risk rating, and pur- 
chasing data for each mutual fund. 
While there are no guarantees that 
past performance will match future 
performance, Morningstar can give 
you a head start on picking the best 
mutual funds. 

Almost all of the major online ser- 
vices, including Prodigy, DELPHI, 
GEnie, Dow Jones News/Retrieval, 
Telescan, CompuServe, and America 
Online, offer financial data that can 
help you learn about your investment 
options and select the investments 
that are best suited for your individual 

If you're a Quicken user, you ought 
to check out the Windows-based 
Reuters Money Network Version for 
Quicken Users. It plugs you and your 
Quicken data into a dedicated finan- 
cial online network. You'll be able to 
access online data on 18,500 invest- 

Money Smarts 

America Online 

Quicken for Windows: CD-ROM 

(800) 827-6364 

Deluxe Edition— $124.95 

Quicken for Windows 3— $69.95 

RetireASAP— $103.00 

Quicken 7— $69.95 

Calypso Software 


(800) 225-8246 

(800) 624-8742 


Windows on WallStreet 2.1— $149.95 



(800) 998-8439 

Kiplinger's CA — Simply Money 

1.5— $39.95 

Managing Your Money for 

Computer Associates 

Windows— $79.95 

(800) 225-5224 

Managing Your Money: 1994 Edition 

for DOS— $79.95 

Destiny— $99.00 

MECA Software 

Comtrad Industries 


(800) 992-2966 

Microsoft Money 2.0— $34.95 

Rich and Retired— $59.95 


DataTech Software 

(800) 426-9400 

(800) 556-7526 

Nirvana Systems 

MetaStock 4.0— $349.00 

(800) 880-0338 

Equis International 

(800) 882-3040 

MoneyCounts for Windows— $49.00 

Parsons Technology 

Charles J. Givens Money Guide 

(800) 223-6925 

(CD-ROM Edition)— $59.95 

Charles J. Givens Money Guide 

Reuters Money Network — $49.95 

(Windows Edition)— $49.95 

Reuters Money Network Version for 

Friendly Software 

Quicken Users— $24.95 


WealthBuilder— $109.95 

Reality Technologies 

(800)346-2024 ^ 

ments, including CDs, mutual funds, 
stocks, bonds, and indexes; create an 
online personalized news clipping 
service; and analyze your Quicken 
investment portfolio to determine 
which investments are making money, 
which investments are losing money, 
and where you should invest next. The 
software package includes one free 
month of online membership, with 
additional access starting at $9.95 a 
month. Reality Technologies also 
offers a similar DOS package, called 
Reuters Money Network, which 
doesn't offer the Quicken links but 
does include an investment portfolio 
manager (the Quicken version uses 
Quicken's own portfolio manager). 

WealthBuilder has one foot in the 
investment-planning camp and the 
other foot in the retirement-planning 
camp. The two go hand in hand, so 
combining them into a single program 
makes a lot of sense. WealthBuilder 
begins by asking you questions about 
your net worth, risk tolerance, and 
investment preferences. It then cre- 
ates an investment strategy that you 
can use as your financial plan. The 
program is heavily weighted toward 
mutual funds and asset allocation, 
though many financial planners would 
recommend a similar strategy for 
long-term savings. You also get a 
built-in portfolio manager and a copy 
of Reuters Money Network. In addi- 
tion, the program can import portfolio 
and budget data from Quicken, 
Managing Your Money, and other per- 
sonal finance programs. 

If you're really serious about ana- 
lyzing stocks and mutual funds, you 
should take a look at MetaStock 4.0, 
the top technical-analysis program. 
While fundamental analysis studies 
the financial data for an investment, 
technical analysis limits itself primarily 
to the price movement of an invest- 
ment, in an attempt to predict future 
price swings. 

Thousands of individual investors 
use MetaStock each day to analyze 
the price movement of their invest- 
ments, using such esoteric technical 
tools (called indicators) as Japanese 
Candlesticks, Relative Strength Index, 
Volume Rate-of-Change, Bollinger 
Bands, and Time Series Forecast. 
They also draw lines to extend price 
patterns, using equally strange meth- 
ods, such as Fibonacci Retracements 
and Gann Fans. Does technical analy- 
sis really work? It seems to help pre- 
dict whether an investment is likely to 




1994 1997 2000 2003 2006 2009 2012 2015 2018 2021 2024 

Don't let your money run 
out before you do! 

Easy-to-use software tells you what to do now in order to be 
secure in your retirement years. 

By Charles Anton 

Someone once said, "old age is not for 
sissies/' In fact, retirement years can be 
fun. But not if you ignore your health — 
or your financial security! 

To help you plan for retirement, a team 
of leading financial planning experts and 
computer programmers 
got together over the 
last three years to create 
Destiny — a computer 
program that lets you 
take control of your 
own financial destiny. 

Top planners. The 

Destiny team, working 
with a major retirement 
association, talked to 
hundreds of people 
from all walks of life . 
People as young as 30 
years old, were begin- 
ning to worry about 
financial security for 
their retirement years. 

While Destiny's cal- 
culations are sophisti- 
cated, running the 
program is as easy as 
one, two, three. You are 
prompted to answer 
some key questions and 
asked what expecta- 
tions you have. Within 
a few seconds a spread- 
sheet and a series of 
graphs materialize with 
all the planning done 
for you. Destiny will 
project up to 60 years. 

Your own portfolio manager. 

With this program you can elect 
to have the personal Portfolio 
Manager take over. Whether you 
choose an aggressive approach, a stan- 

dard approach 

or even a more 
approach, the 
manager auto- 
matically selects 
a relatively more conservative one as 
you get closer to retirement. 

Through Sector Management, the 
Portfolio Manager maintains a 

balance among high, moderate and 
low risk assets 
according to the 
allocation strat- 
egy that you 
choose. To main- 
tain the right 

balance of investments, the manager 

adjusts your portfolio as time goes by. 

No other program incorporates these 

sophisticated calculations. 

The government pension myth. Most peo- 
ple know you can't rely on social security alone 
to meet retirement needs. Destiny can answer 
this problem and many others. It uses infor- 
mation such as age, the assets you already- 
own, your investment strategy and expenses 
you might have along 
the way, such as tuition 
for your children. If you 
are already retired, 
Destiny can show you 
how much you can safe- 
ly spend each year. 
Can my money work 
harder? As recently re- 
ported on CNN, the most 
common mistake people 
make in managing their 
savings is being too 
conservative. Destiny 
allows you to see the 
impact of following a 
more aggressive savings 
strategy at a comfortable 
level of risk. 

By answering easy 
prompts on your moni- 
tor, the program stores 
essential information 
such as your age, your 
income, your invest- 
ments and your assets. 
Then it tells you what 
you can expect to have in 
real dollars to take care 
of your security. If you 
would like to change 
what the figures and 
graphs reveal for your 
future, you must go back 

Before. Without a plan, 
i/ou con hi run out of money. 

to your original input and experiment with 
more 'put aside' money so that future income 
will be adequate to your wishes. 

And inflation? Unfortunately, inflation is a 
fact of life. Inflation can be set at whatever 
level you estimate for the future in any plan 
you decide to follow. 

The results can change in seconds to color- 
ful graphs that tell exactly what to expect for 
each year of the future. Your retirement time, 
instead of being gray and uncertain, sudden- 
ly becomes cheerful, predictable and secure. 
Each projection could cost $1000. To 
have this personal information forecasted for 
any given situation by a financial advisor could 
cost up to $1000. 
However, because 
this program is 
a moveable feast, 
forecast-wise, you 
can have as many 
projections as you 
like at one low price. 

This offer is not 
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else in the U.S. To 
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public, Comtrad is 
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complete with pro- 
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Free book makes you an expert. 

Order Destiny, and we'll send you the 
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go up or down, and when it's com- 
bined with fundamental analysis to 
select the investments, an individual 
investor can increase his or her odds 
of beating the market. (Stocks, by the 
way, have increased over the long 
term at about 10 percent a year. This 
is why the stock market has tradition- 
ally been a great place for long-term 

In addition to creating charts and 
letting you analyze them with an array 
of indicators, MetaStock provides 
three outstanding features: Custom 
Formulas, The System Tester, and The 
Explorer. With Custom Formulas, you 
can have as many as 250 different 
custom formulas, either ones you cre- 
ate yourself or ones you download 
from places such as the Investor's 
Forum. With The System Tester, you 
can combine one or more indicators 
into a trading system and test that 
system against the historical data for 
an individual security. You can then 
optimize your trading system to 
improve the results. With The 
Explorer, you can perform in-depth 
analysis on multiple securities across 
multiple directories and generate a 
performance report that ranks the 
securities according to your analysis. 

Nirvana Systems has a terrific series 
of add-on products for MetaStock, 
including four volumes of trading sys- 
tems that you load directly into 
MetaStock ($49 each, $79 for any two, 
or $149 for all four); a set (called 
Journeys!) of explorations and tem- 
plates that let you quickly display the 
results of each run of The Explorer 
and four utility packages that 
make it easy to find the best 
trading systems for your par 
ticular investments. A basic 
package with the first vol- 
ume of trading systems 
and the three mos 
popular utility pack- 
ages is $169, ( 
$390 when pur- 
chased with 

Windows on WallStreet 2.1 is similar 
to MetaStock in that it lets you perform 
technical analysis on stocks, bonds, 
mutual funds, commodities, and index- 
es using a variety of indicators. You can 
even import MetaStock price data and 
custom indicators. It also features a 
profitability tester similar to MetaStock's 
System Tester and a SmartScan fea- 
ture similar to MetaStock's Explorer. 
Windows on WallStreet improves on 
MetaStock by including context-sensi- 
tive help, a built-in module that lets you 
automatically download price informa- 
tion (currently supporting CompuServe, 
GEnie, Dow Jones News/Retrieval, and 
Dial/Data), and a built-in communica- 
tions program that lets you research 
company financial information (for fun- 
damental analysis). Until Equis's long- 
awaited Windows version of 
MetaStock arrives later this year 
Windows on WallStreet is clearly 
the Windows technical-analy- 
sis program to beat. 

to learn how to save and you've 
explored various investment 
options. How will you know 
when you've saved enough? 
How can you save for a 
house, your kid's educa- 
tion, and a comfort- 
able retirement if 
you don't know 
how much to set 
aside each 
month and 
how much 

Mighty Oaks from 
Acorns Grow 

Let's assume that 
you've used 
your person- 
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Edited by Mike Hudnall 
Reviews by William Harrel 

Until recently, low-cost note- 
books were too slow and 
the screens too hard to see 
for long hours of sustained 
work, the kind of work you do in 
the office or at home. About all 
they were good for was typing cor- 
respondence and sending and re- 
ceiving faxes and E-mail, Until 
just a few months ago, machines 
capable of processing graphics, 
presentations, and large spread- 
sheets—say, a 486SX with a col- 
or monitor and large hard disk — 
cost upwards of $4,000. 

The times they are a changin'. 
Because of price wars in the PC 
industry, notebook prices are plum- 
meting. In addition, new 
technologies— such as 
CPUs, dual-scan color 
screens, docking stations, 
and PCMCIA expansion — 
have catapulted note- 
books to new heights in 
power and functionality. 
Today's notebooks are 
powerful enough for all but 
the most intensive, high- 
end desktop publishing 
and graphics applications 
And these notebooks 
cost less than $2,500! 

Energy and Economics 

The heavy power consumption of 
the most powerful CPUs has pre- 
vented their being built into battery- 
powered notebook PCs weighing 
less than eight pounds; however, 
the arrival of the power-saving 
microprocessors, such as the 3.3- 
volt DX2 and DX4 chips, means 
that notebook vendors can now 
manufacture the fastest, most pow- 
er-efficient portable computers 
we've ever seen. Intel's DX2 and 
DX4 chips for notebooks are spur- 
ring on the production of a slew of 
powerhouse portable computers 
capable of speeds more impres- 
sive than those of some desktop 
486DX machines. Several of the 
notebooks reviewed here, all 486s, 


take advantage of this clock-dou- 
bling and -tripling technology. In 
our BAPCo speed tests (see the 
"Our Testing Procedure" sidebar), 
machines built around DX2 and 
DX4 chips ran circles around the 
two using the 486SX technology, 
which lacks a math coprocessor. 
In addition to being fast, these 
new chips are energy misers. The 
results of the battery tests varied 
widely between clock-doubled 
chips and the SX chips but 
remained pretty constant in each 
class (see the Features table). 
Power consumption, however, 
really depends on how you use 
the computer. Applications such 
as graphics programs, which ac- 
cess the hard disk often, use 
more power than, say, word proc- 

essors. Still, the DX2s and DX4s, 
combined with Microsoft's DOS- 
based power-saving utility (and 
the additional utilities that ship 
with most of these computers) 
turned in some impressive bat- 
tery lives. The Texas Instruments 
TravelMate 4000eWinDX2/50, for 
example, lasted three hours and 
15 minutes. Never before have 
notebook users been able to get 
that much computing power for 
that long off one battery charge. 

Coming in for a Landing 

These great gains in performance 
and capability are terrific, but are 
high-end notebooks actually usa- 
ble for day-to-day work? After all, 

the Austin machine, which is fea- 
ture-rich and incredibly easy to 
use, has a gorgeous dual-scan 
passive-matrix display— but it's 
only 9.5 inches. Compared to the 
15-inch CRT on most of our 
desks, it clearly falls short when 
you need big-screen clarity. And 
many of us are accustomed to 17- 
inch or 20-inch monitors. 

Who's going to do high-end 
graphics and desktop publishing 
on a notebook? Nobody. Note- 
book screens are suitable for trav- 
el only. Even the largest display— 
the MidWest Micro Elite's 10.4- 
inch screen — gives you head- 
aches after a few hours of graph- 
ics work. Most of the machines 
reviewed here are capable of 256 
colors at 640 x 480 resolution. All 
except two (the Toshiba 
Satellite and Twinhead 
Slimnote support only stan- 
dard VGA) support an 
external Super VGA mon- 
itor in one fashion or anoth- 
er. For long hours in a gra- 
phical interface, you need 
an external monitor. A few, 
such as the MidWest 
Micro Elite and Austin Du- 
al Scan Power, support res- 
olutions up to 1280x 1028. 
The Elite even supports 
true color at some resolu- 

Another prolonged-use 
impediment is the small 
keyboards lacking separate num- 
ber pads. While all the keyboards 
I tried offer adequate tactile feed- 
back and key travel, you may 
want to take advantage of the op- 
tion of plugging in an external key- 
board. All of these notebooks 
allow you to plug in full-size key- 
boards for easier, less cramped da- 
ta input and more comfort. Simply 
set one of these road warriors on 
your desktop, plug in a keyboard 
and a monitor, and you've got a 
quite workable computer for lots of 

Meanwhile, docking stations 
are alive and well. Once used pri- 
marily to house a big hard drive 
and connect to the network, they 

money will grow over the years? 
Most personal finance pro- 
grams have a simple module 
that lets you quickly figure 
how much you might need 
to save, given your 
goals and current 
financial circum- 
stances. But for a 
true estimate of 
what it will 
take, you'll 
need a 
d . e d i - 


cated retirement-planning program. A 
dedicated program can account for 
income that varies each year, deter- 
mine if you'll have to sell assets to elim- 
inate any yearly shortfalls, and let you 
perform elaborate what-if scenarios, 
such as how the year you retire would 
affect the amount you need to save, 
how a change in the tax rate would 
affect your retirement income and 
Social Security, and how higher infla- 
tion would cut into the buying power of 
your retirement funds. 

Rich and Retired is a full-featured 
retirement-planning program. It can 
handle assets that you plan to buy in 
the future, calculate how your assets 
and taxes will change if you inherit 
property, factor in the percentage of 
your assets that can be sold to sup- 
port your retirement, and automati- 
cally adjust your yearly savings 
rate to keep up with inflation. 
Retirement reports include 
Yearly Shortfall Report, 
Yearly Cash Flow Sum- 
mary, Yearly Over- 
view, Detailed Re- 
port for Specific 
Year, and Life- 
time Over- 
view. Fortu- 
n a t e I y , 

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film stars 
Brian Keith, 
Margot Kidder, 
& Russell Means 
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Windows-based program is relatively 
easy to use and has an extensive help 
system. Once you've entered the 
data — which is no small feat if you 
want to get the full benefits of the pro- 
gram—you can quickly view the 
effects of any changes on your pro- 
jected net worth. 

Two other retirement-planning pro- 
grams, both DOS based, are 
RetireASAP and Destiny. RetireASAP 
produces a number of useful reports, 
including Overview Report, All 
Income — Non-Investment: Now and 
During Retirement, and Year-by-Year 
Contributions Guide. The program 
also includes an online investment 
guide, called The ABC's of Investing. 
A Windows version should be avail- 
able by the time you read this. 
Destiny, developed by MacKenzie 
Systems but sold through Comtrad 
Industries, includes a built-in portfolio 
manager and retirement-planning 
workbook. The 65-page workbook is 
an excellent introduction to tax- 
deferred savings, investment diversifi- 
cation, inflation-adjusted savings, risk 
management, and asset allocation. 

From Here to There 

The time to think about the future is 
now. Save money, invest intelligently, 
and take the opportunity to learn the 
secrets of money management from 
the experts. That's it. With the help of 
these programs, you could soon be on 
your way to a more financially secure 
future. They're designed for nonac- 
countants like you and me, so don't 
feel you won't be up to it. You will 
have to think about what you want 
out of life and spend some time 
rganizing your financial 
data. But once that's over 
ith and you see the 
results, you may well 
agree that buying 
money-smart soft- 
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Acoustic Resrch P622 $239 
Advncd Grvs Ultrsd Mx $185 
Altec ACS 200 Speakr $209 
Auto Cockpit $169 

Cyberman $79 

Flight Cockpit $219 

Flight Stick Pro $57 

Gravis Analog Joystick $29 
Gravis PC Game Pad $19 
Jet Stick $24 

LabtecCS-1200Spkers $84 
Labtec CS-900 Spkers $69 
MS Flit Sim 5 Grvs Jystk $49 
MS Flit Sim 5 Grvs Pro $56 
NEC 3XI Int CD Drive $459 
PC Virtual Golf Club $129 
Pilot Control Stand $19 

Pro Audio Spectrum Plus $89 
Reel Magic CD Upgrde $599 
Reel Magic Vid Upgrd $359 
SBIaster 16 Basic $119 

SBIaster 16 MCD (ASP)$179 
Sound Blaster 32 AWE $263 
SBIaster Discvry CD 16 $299 
Sound Blaster Pro Value $85 
SBIast Vid Spigot WIN $1 99 
Sound Galaxy BX2 wSp $49 
Sound Man Wave $188 

Teac Quad Spd CD Drv $595 
Thrustmst Driving Sys $111 
Thrustmaster FCS Pro $99 
Thrust FCS Pro UPROM $14 
Thrustmaster FLC Sys $119 
Thrustmst Game Card $25 
Thrustmst Rudder Sys $99 
Thrust WCS2 UPROM $14 
Universal Cockpit $219 

VFX 1 Virt Realty Hdgr $949 
Virtual Pilot Pro $84 


7th Guest 2:1 1th Hr CD $54 

Alone in the Dark 3 CD $48 

Altered Destiny $29 

Beneath a Steel Sky CD $39 

Bioforge CD $52 

Bloodnet $39 

Brain Dead 13 CD $35 

Cadillacs & Dinosurs CD $46 

Castle Wolfenstein CD $42 

Companions of Xanth $32 

Conspiracy CD $39 

Corridor 7 $28 

Creature Shock CD $48 

Cyberia CD $46 

Dark Forces CD $48 

Darkseed 2 $42 

Death Gate CD $35 

Doom 2: Hell on Earth $45 

Dracula CD $35 

Epic $32 

Fortress of Dr. Radiaki $48 
Fred P. Frntr Pharmcst 2 $44 

Full Throttle CD $42 

Gabriel Knight CD $45 

Gateway 2 CD $32 

Goblins 3 CD $19 

Harvester CD $46 

Hell Cab CD $46 

Horde $44 
Indy Jones Ft Atlantis CD$42 

Inherit the Earth $32 

Innocent Until Caught $34 

Iron Helix CD $56 

Jagged Alliance $48 

Jonny Quest $26 
Journeyman Projct 2 CD $52 

Jurassic Park $36 

King's Quest 7 CD $49 

King's Ransom $36 

Lands of Lore 2 $42 

Legend Kyrandia 3 CD $39 

Leisure Suit Larry 6 CD $39 

Loadstar CD $38 

Lost Eden CD $48 

Lunicus CD $42 

Myst CD $46 
No Mouth & I Must Scrm $44 

Noctropolis $48 

Out of this World 2 CD $45 

Phantasmagoria CD $49 

Quantum Gate WIN CD $45 

Red Shift WIN CD $44 

Return of Phantom CD $38 

Return to Zork CD $44 

Ringworld CD $38 
Robinson's Requiem CD $35 

Robot City CD $48 

Shadow of Comet CD $47 

Spawn $44 

Star Trek 25 Annivrs CD $54 
StarTrk: Str Fit Acad CD $52 

System Shock $48 

The Dig $40 

Touche $39 

Trance Mission CD $36 

Ultimate Domain $39 

Universal Neverlock $39 

Voyeur CD $46 

Where in World Dlx CD $54 

Zombie DinoCD $41 

Zorro $39 

All Character Editors $ 1 6 

Al-Qadim CD S39 

Arena: Elder Scrolls $39 

Blackmoore CD $46 

Celtic Legends $32 

Champions $37 

Cobra Mission $34 

Cyber Space CD $38 

CyberJudas CD $48 

Cyclones CD $48 

Dark Sun CD $49 

Demon Hunter $42 

Disciples of Steel $34 

Dragon Tales CD $38 

Dungeon Master 2 CD $48 

Eye of Beholder 3 CD $42 

Forgotten Castle $49 

Gateway Savge Frontier $32 
Heroes of Might & Magic $45 

Hexx: Heresy of Wizard $32 

Hunters of Ralk CD $54 

Jorune CD $48 
Kingdm Far Reaches CD $44 

Knight Xentar CD $48 
Knight Xentar Adit Upgrd $5 

Legacy: Realm Of Terror $39 

Lord of the Rings 2 CD $38 

Lords of Midnight CD $44 

Masters of Magic $41 

Menzoberranzan $39 

Might & Magic 5 $36 

Pools of Darkness $38 

Ravenloft CD $51 

Realms of Arkania $25 

Red Crystal $21 

Return to Ringworld CD $48 

Riftwar Legacy CD $23 

Shadow Caster CD $45 

Sherlock Holmes 3 CD $51 

Skyrealms of Jorune CD $50 

Star Trail $46 

StarTrk Dp Space 9 CD $52 

Star Trek Next Gen CD $56 

Stonekeep CD $46 

Stronghold $36 

Sword of China $42 

Syndicate Plus CD $41 

Ultima 7 Black Gate $47 

Ultima 7 Series CD $42 

Ultima 7.5 Serpent Isle $48 

Ultima 8 CD w/spch pk $47 

Ultima 8: Pagan $48 

Ultima Uworld 1 & 2 CD $32 

Ultima Uwrld 2 Labyrinth $48 

Uncharted Waters $42 

Witch World $42 

World of Xeen CD $40 

AH-64 B Longbow $54 

Aces of the Pacific $44 

Aces over Europe CD $39 
Across the Rhine $48 

AirCmbtPac 1942 SD 1 $32 
Air Warrior 2 CD $34 

Army Air Corps: 1 942 $48 
Chopper Pack CD $38 

Chopper Strike $48 

Cyber Race CD $39 

F15 Strike Eagle 3 CD $48 
FA 18 Hornet CD $54 

Fighter Duel Pro 2 $33 

Fleet Defender CD $48 

Flight $52 

Flight Light CD $19 

Flight Sim Toolkit CD $54 
Flight Unlimited CD $48 

Frontier Elite 2 $36 

Great Naval Battles 2 CD$42 
Harrier Assult SVGA CD $44 
Hell CD $48 

Indy Car Racing $31 

Jet Fighter 3 $44 

Loderunner $38 

Maximum Ovrkitl Bdl CD $56 
Mech Commander $38 

Mechwarrior 2 CD $46 

Megarace CD $39 

Metal Tech 2: Earth Sieg $45 
MS Flight Sim 5.0 $44 

Nascar Racing $39 

Operation Airstorm CD $42 
Pacific Strike wSpch CD $48 
Pheonix Fighter CD $48 
Privateer CD $48 

Privateer Special Oper 2 $22 
Renegade $39 

Sea Wolf CD $44 

SimCity Clssc Grph 1&2 $14 
Space Clipper $42 

Spectre VR CD $45 

Star Crusader CD $48 

Stim Slum $42 

Strike Commander CD $55 
Sub Batt Sim 2 Win CD $39 
TFX CD $39 

Theme Park $42 

Tie Fighter $45 

Tornado $48 

U-Boat 2 $36 

Wing Commdr 2 Dlx CD $29 
Wing Commander 3 CD $52 
Wolf Pack CD $33 

World Circuit 2 CD $44 

X-Wing Mission Disk 1 $19 
Zephyr $45 

A Train wConstructn Set $36 
Advanced Civilization $35 
Alien Legacy $38 

Arctic Baron CD $29 

Battle of Chickmagua CD$42 
Buzz A. Race Space CD $54 
Cannon Fodder CD $34 

Civilization $44 

Colonization $48 

Command and Conquer $42 
Dead Zone CD $52 

El Fish $34 

Empire Deluxe 2 $38 

Even More Incred Mach $28 
Fantasy Empires CD $42 
Front Lines $39 

Genghis Khan 2 $34 

Global Domination $34 

Grandest Fleet $35 

Hammer of the Gods $42 
Harpoon 2 $42 

High Seas Trader $39 

Hollywood Mogul $39 

Jagged Alliance CD $48 
Kingdm Far Reaches CD $41 
Kingmaker $34 

Koshan Conspiracy CD $48 
Lemmings 3 $39 

Liberty or Death $37 

Lords of the Realm $39 

Lost Admiral 2 $39 

Master of Orion $39 

Millenium Auction CD $48 
Outpost CD $39 

Pax Imperia $42 

Perfect General 2 CD $36 
Power House CD $39 

Project USA $29 

Rags to Riches $36 

Romance 3 Kingdoms 4 $39 
Serf City: Life is Feudal $39 
Sim Ant CD $41 

Sim City 2000 CD $45 

Sim City 2000: Grt Distrs $14 
Sim City CD $47 

Sim City Classic $26 

Sim Earth CD $47 

Sim Town CD $44 

Smokin' Gun WIN $28 

Space Hulk $19 

Space Miner $36 

Starship: Rgrn Agnda CD$39 
Strike Squad $39 

Tegel's Mercenaries 2 $44 
Ticonderoga $46 

Walls of Rome $39 

X-Com: UFO Defnse CD $41 

Battle Chss 4000 SVGA $26 
Bridge 2: wOmar Sharif $28 
Chessmnc 5 Bill & 1 CD $34 
Chessmaster 3000 CD $46 
Classic 5 $19 

Clue CD $19 

Even Mr Incrd Mach CD $39 
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Circle Reader Service Number 309 




Maybe you've had this 
experience: You bring 
home your new hot software 
purchase, sit down to the 
computer, load the pro- 
gram, and finally type in the 
command to run it. Nothing 
happens. Or you get an 
error message stating that 
there's not enough memory 
to run it. Or the computer 
ties itself into knots curable 
only by rebooting. 

Other times, you don't 
even get that far. Perhaps 
the installation routine looks 
at the available space on 
your hard drive and snootily 
informs you that you don't 
have enough space. Or it 
snarls itself up trying to find 
and test your sound card. 
Or it could be any of a hun- 
dred other nasty ways that 
modern software has to 
frustrate your efforts to run it 
on anything less than 
absolutely modern, state-of- 
the-art hardware. 

Even if you're lucky and 
it runs, you're' not out of the 
woods. You may find the 
voices and sound effects 
lagging well behind the 
screen action, or the video 
may come in sporadic jerks, 
or the program may run so 
slooooowly that it's just not 

These things happen all 
the time. Software develop- 
ers seem" to aim at the lead- 
ing edge of the hardware 
wave and assume that you 
have the latest in a high- 
powered computer. So to 
run today's hot software, 
you're faced with a choice: 
Buy a new computer or 
upgrade your existing 

Upgrading can make 
sense— unless you're replac- 
ing everything inside the 
case. If you're still running a 
386 of any variety, you're 














COMPUTE'S Getting Started with Upgrading Your 
PC was written by Richard O. Mann. 

probably hitting limitations 
regularly. Depending on the 
software you want to run, 
upgrading a few compo- 
nents can give you a capa- 
ble'new machine. If you have 
an old 286, upgrading the 
motherboard and chip (and 
probably the hard drive) can 
do the job for you, although 

you should carefully evaluate 
the comparative costs of 
buying an entirely new 
machine. Remember that the 
old parts you don't upgrade 
may not be long for this 

Keep in mind throughout 
this series of articles on 
upgrading that all but the 

most lavish 486 screamers 
are really quite reasonably 
priced. Further, if you buy a 
new computer, you'll still 
have the old one around for 
limited duty. As the sixties 
became the era of the two- 
car family, the nineties are 
becoming the era of the 
two-computer family. 


Boyd Peterson, president of 
DeskTop Media, a Salt Lake 
City mail-order firm, has 
counseled hundreds of 
computer owners anxious to 
modernize their computers 
by upgrading. "Find the bot- 
tleneck in your system," 
Peterson advises, "and 
attack it first. If you work pri- 
marily in Windows, the first 
thing to do is upgrade to 
8MB of memory. Even with 
older computers, the extra 
memory often speeds every- 
thing up to tolerable levels." 

Sometimes, the bottle- 
neck is obvious — the soft- 
ware tells you why it won't 
run. You generally know 
when you've filled your hard 
drive. When the computer 
locks itself up tight, you'll 
probably have to work with 
knowledgeable friends or 
tech support in order to 
identify the problem. Once 
you do, you'll know what 
needs to be replaced — if 
outdated equipment is the 

The most common 
upgrade impetus, however, 
is the need for speed. 
Here's where bottleneck 
elimination can pay big divi- 
dends. To find the cause of 
your slowdown, take note of 
exactly when you're waiting 
for the computer. What's 
happening at that moment? 
Is the hard drive light flash- 
ing as the computer loads 
programs or reads data? 
Are you waiting for the com- 




puter to redraw complex 
screens? If you're in 
Windows, is the hard drive 
running all the time as your 
applications continually 
swap memory out to disk? 
Is the computer crunching 
numbers or doing large 
data sorts or manipulations? 

If the problem is moun- 
tains of data clogging up 
the works, a new mother- 
board with a faster and 
wider bus is the answer. If 
it's raw processing power 
(number crunching, sorting, 
processing vector graph- 
ics), a simple chip upgrade 
is called for. If it's screen 
redraws, a new video card 
may do the trick. If Windows 
is grinding your hard drive 
into an early grave, you 
need more memory. Or you 
may require a combination 
of these things. 

If you decide to upgrade, 
it's going to take some plan- 
ning and care, but it isn't 
unreasonably difficult — even 
for the mildly fumble-fin- 
gered among us. Upgrading 
is such a common activity 
these days that the upgrade 
component makers are now 
skilled at providing ade- 
quate instructions and tools, 
when needed. 


One way to drag your old 
hardware out to the leading 
edge of technology is to pop 
out its outmoded old horse- 
and-buggy-days CPU 
(Central Processing Unit — 
the brain of the computer) 
and slide in a new chip. A 
486DX4-100 sounds good or 
maybe a Pentium, right? 

For some, it's almost that 
easy; for others, the whole 
chip upgrade scenario can 
become a nightmare. Yet 
others can forget it entirely; 
their aging computers 
weren't built to allow 

upgrades. Most of us fall 
somewhere in between. 

Can I Upgrade My 

The first step is to determine 
if a chip upgrade is even 
possible. Many of the larger 
clone makers purposely 
make their computers non- 
standard enough to force 
you to buy upgrade compo- 
nents directly from them — at 
prices well above street 
prices for normal upgrade 
hardware. Packard Bell, 
Leading Edge, Epson, and 
Hyundai fall into this group. 

Other clones tend to be 
more standard, but the only 
way to be sure is to talk to 
your computer vendor (or 
perhaps the upgrade chip 
vendor) to see if your partic- 
ular machine is capable of 
accepting an upgrade chip. 
(This advice applies to 
motherboards, as well.) 

If you have a 486SX or 
DX running at 16, 25, or 33 
MHz, you're in luck. 
Upgrading these newer 
chips is usually much easier 
than upgrading earlier 
CPUs — the upgrade fever 
had hit before these 
machines were made, and 
manufacturers often made 
allowances for upgrades. 

How Far Should I 

Once you know you can 
upgrade your chip, the next 
question is how far into the 
future to go. Two factors will 
determine this: price and 
desired performance boost. 
Price, of course, is a judg- 
ment call that only you can 
make. Note, however, that 
competition from Cyrix and 
AMD has brought the price 
of all 486 chips down rapid- 
ly, making the upgrade route 
more attractive than ever. 

Considering the perfor- 
mance boost you'll get from 
the various chips available 

is a little more of a chal- 
lenge. Remembering the 
bottleneck analysis men- 
tioned above, you may put 
a speed demon chip in your 
computer without much 
effect— because of other 
speed-limiting components 
of your system. With a slow 
hard drive and a 16-bit bus, 
for instance, the fastest chip 
may still take long minutes 
to load Windows. 

You need to balance the 
chip's speed with the capa- 
bilities of the rest of your 
computer. A Pentium 
OverDrive chip in a slot 
where a 486SX-25 once 
held court would still be lim- 
ited by the 25-MHz bus 
moving only 32 bits of data 
at a time. You'd be missing 
out entirely on one of the 
major advantages of the 
Pentium— its 64-bit bus. It 
would still be faster than the 
old chip, of course, but not 
as fast as it could be. 

If you're not comfortable 
with discussions of bus width 
(16 bits, 32 bits, or 64 bits) 
and bus speed (16 MHz, 25 
MHz, or 33 MHz), you may 
need to find a helpful dealer 
who can tell you how the 
new chip will perform with 
your existing setup. 

At this writing, Pentium 
upgrade chips for the 
OverDrive sockets found in 
many computers manufac- 
tured since mid 1992 are still 
not available. Code-named 
P24T, the chip uses Pentium 
technology inside (including 
a 64-bit data bus) but com- 
municates with the outside 
world through the 32-bit bus 
that exists in 486 systems. 
Early tests with the first P24T 
chips found that they not 
only didn't work in some 
computers but actually 
destroyed them. Following 
many delays, Intel now 
promises the Pentium 
OverDrive chip by the end of 
the year. 

In the meantime, Intel 
has released the clock- 
tripled 486DX4-75 and 
486DX4-100 chips, which 
communicate with the com- 
puters at 25 MHz and 33 
MHz respectively, while 
operating internally at the 
previously unheard-of 
speeds of 75 and 100 MHz. 
According to Intel, these 
chips deliver entry-level 
Pentium speed. 

Installing a New Chip 

For some, installing a new 
chip is as easy as removing 
the old chip and plugging in 
a new one. For others, it 
can be an experience on a 
par with root canal work. 

Removing the old chip is 
often easier said than done. 
Upgrade kits usually supply 
a many-toothed chip-puller 
tool that allows you to gently 
work the nearly two hun- 
dred pins of the old chip out 
of their sockets. If the com- 
puter was well designed, 
you'll have access to the 
chip area to do this. In too 
many cases, though, the 
chip is hidden under a half- 
dozen other components 
that you'll have to remove to 
get at the chip. In some 
cases, it's nestled into a 
secure home covered by a 
nonremovable part of the 

Wherever it is, it has to 
come out before you can 
put in the new one — unless 
you have one of the newer 
computers with a separate 
upgrade socket. 

Installing the new chip 
must be done with exquisite 
care. You don't want to 
bend or break one of its 
scores of pins — the little 
legs that must fit precisely 
into their proper holes in the 
socket. Considering the 
cost of this little bit of silicon 
and metal, you want to be 
very, very careful as you 
ease it into its new home. 



I* II 


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The saga continues when 


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Be sure it's seated securely 
in the socket before apply- 
ing power. 

Flip the power switch, 
listen for frying noises, and 
watch for smoke. Absent 
smoke and flame, you've 
probably done it right. If the 
power switch sets off your 
own little electrical storm — 
well, you really should have 
opted for a new system 
anyway, right? 

Seriously, you should be 
moderately confident of 
your ability to work with 
these precious components 
before tackling a job where 
mistakes are so costly. But 
if you exercise appropriate 

caution and follow the 
directions, you'll usually 
come out of the experience 
with new confidence and a 
wonderfully souped-up, 
like-new PC. 


The simplest upgrade you 
can make inside the com- 
puter case is system mem- 
ory. A few potential compli- 
cations lurk here F but all 
you usually do is locate the 
sockets and plug in new 
SIMMs (Single In-line 
Memory Modules). You do, 

of course, have to open up 
the case to do this. 

When Does More 
Memory Help? 

The primary need for 
increased memory comes 
when you adopt Windows 
or OS/2. Windows by itself 
uses more memory than 
most 286s ever had. Run a 
modern Windows applica- 
tion, and your memory is 
quickly gobbled up. 

Microsoft would have you 
believe that a 4MB machine 
runs Windows without diffi- 
culty. That's basically true. 
With 4MB, you can success- 
fully run many Windows 

applications, but virtually 
any major application 
released in the last year or 
so really needs 6MB to 8MB 
to run at an acceptable 
speed. Don't even try to run 
WordPerfect for Windows 
6.0 with anything less than 
8MB. (I finally took it off my 
4MB laptop— it was so slow 
that it was totally unusable.) 
You'll get the same results 
with almost any recent main- 
line application. 

Recent research proves 
what many already knew: 
There's a "sweet spot" for 
Windows 3.1 at 8MB of 
memory. Performance 
speeds improve dramati- 


Upgrading your comput- 
er's motherboard: Now 
there's a scary thought. It 
has to be extremely diffi- 
cult and expensive, right? 
Not so. Installing one isn't 
the easiest mechanical 
feat in the world to pull off, 
but it's not beyond the 
abilities of most of us. The 
cost is down in the $150 
range— sometimes less. 
And the benefits can be 

What's on a mother- 
board? You can buy your 
CPU chip with the board, 
but for now we'll discuss 
the CPU separately. Your 
computer's motherboard 
is the home of its data 
bus, in the form of the 
expansion slots where you 
plug in boards and cards 
as well as the on-board 
circuitry. It has memory 
sockets, a CPU socket 
(and maybe an upgrade 
or OverDrive chip socket), 
BIOS chips, the memory 
cache, and the chip set 
(the rest of the necessary 
circuitry for running the 
computer). Your present 
motherboard may also 

have additional functions 
built in. such as the video 
adapter, drive controllers, 
and so forth. Upgrade 
boards generally don't 
have such built-ins. 

As with CPU chips, not 
every computer will accept 
an industry-standard up- 
grade motherboard. Many 
proprietary clone makers 
make theirs sufficiently dif- 
ferent to prevent the use of 
any new board except 
their own. Packard Bell, for 
example, charges $850 for 
a 386-40 upgrade mother- 
board that would otherwise 
cost around $129. 

If you're going from a 
386 to a 486 or Pentium, it 
will almost always pay to 
get a new motherboard in 
the process, according to 
Boyd Peterson of DeskTop 
Media in Salt Lake City. This 
way, your data bus can 
match the speed of the 
faster processor, and you're 
ensured that the BIOS and 
other components are new 
and compatible. 

The primary issue in 
selecting a new mother- 
board is the type of data 

bus. The choices are the 
old Industry Standard 
Architecture (ISA), VESA 
Local Bus (VLB), and 
Intel's new Peripheral 
Component Interconnect 
(PCI) bus. The mother- 
board will have standard 
expansion slots and two or 
more VLB or PCI slots. 

Local bus and PCI oper- 
ate at much higher speeds 
and bandwidths than the 
old ISA bus, dramatically 
speeding up the movement 
of data through the com- 
puter. As computer makers 
decide whether to adopt 
VESA's new version 2 
specification or PCI over 
the next half year, the win- 
ner will emerge. 

In any case, get one or 
the other — forget the out- 
moded ISA bus. Peterson 
recommends local bus 
because the only cards 
currently available for PCI 
are video adapters and 
hard drive controllers. He 
also points out that only 
PCI-specific cards can 
plug into PCI slots — they're 
not backward compatible 
as local-bus slots are. 

Another issue is built-in 
functions on the mother- 
board. Peterson warns that 
built-ins commandeer a set 
of hardware interrupts (the 
dreaded IRQs and DMAs 
you hear about) that may 
conflict with other cards, 
such as sound cards, 
video cards, and even par- 
allel ports and game ports. 
Even when you can turn off 
the built-in functions, you 
don't get back access to 
those interrupts. 

You may want to get a 
ZIF (Zero Insertion Force) 
upgrade socket on your 
new motherboard— it's 
usually a $10 to $15 
option— to allow for future 
chip upgrades. 

And finally, dealers 
warn against looking for 
the absolute lowest price in 
upgrade motherboards. 
These bargain-basement 
wonders often use outdat- 
ed BIOSs and chip sets as 
well as physically inferior 
materials. A decent moth- 
erboard isn't that much 
more expensive; go for 
high quality in such an inte- 
gral part of your computer. 


"Welcome to SimCity® CD-ROM!" 

Sure, Sure. It's all fun 
and games when you 
can play lord-god-king 
to a bunch of pixel- 
high people and text 
boxes. Now lets see how 
that Mayoral muster 

Fhe Sim Action News keeps you posted on 

daily disasters and other headline news. holds Up when VOtlVe 

faced with the real thing... Real disasters. Real 

Chaos. Real people. 

Introducing SimCity Enhanced CD-ROM from 

Interplay Productions. 
Its SimCity with a 
whole new attitude as 
the award-winning 
classic goes Hollywood 
with professional actors, 
location shooting, full 

Full motion video brings your city officials 

to life -Police chief Fire chief and more! motion video and real- 

life footage of those 
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(come on, admit it.. .we 
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r Mess up and you It watch as natural 

plants. Heck, Wreak City- disaster and crime destroy your creation. 

wide havoc while you're at it... just don't expect your 
SimCitizens to sit around and take it because in this 
SimCity, your citizens are anything but quiet. You'll 
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face with vein-popping city officials 
and truly experience the lives you rule 
with each click of your mouse. 

SimCity Enhanced CD-ROM. 
The all new original city simulator. 

Available tor IBM PC & compatibles. 
CD-ROM and Hard Drive required. 





Software K 1994 Interplay Productions, Inc. <i> 1989, 1991, 1992, 1993 Sim-Business and Will Wright. All rights reserved worldwide. 
SimCity is a registered trademark of Sim-Business dba Maxis. All other TM's are properties of Interplay Productions, Inc. 

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cally as you go from 4MB to 
8MB. Further improvement 
as you move to 12MB and 
16MB and beyond slows to 
almost none. You won't 
need 16MB or more with 
today's Windows applica- 
tions (I make no promises 
for next year's software, 
however), unless you're 
working with ultralarge files 
(such as 10MB graphics or 
desktop publishing files) or 
you regularly need to run 
four or five large Windows 
applications simultaneously. 
OLE 2.0, the Windows fea- 
ture that essentially embeds 
a whole application within 
another through linked 
objects, also benefits from 
memory beyond 8MB. 

Types of Memory 


You'll need to know which 
kind of memory sockets 
your motherboard has. The 
quickest way to find out is 
to have someone knowl- 
edgeable look inside the 
case, but your computer 
manual should tell you — if 
you can find it. A call to the 
computer vendor with serial 
number in hand should also 
net you the needed info. 

If it's an older machine, 
you may have DRAM chips, 
which you have to remove 
and replace with higher- 
capacity DRAM chips in the 
same sockets. To go above 
4MB in my old Northgate 
386, I had to buy an expan- 
sion board to hold 1MB 
SIMMs after replacing the 
original DRAM chips. 

If your motherboard has 
empty SIMM sockets, 
upgrading is a snap — just 
pop new SIMMs in, and 
you're done. If there are no 
empty sockets, you'll need 
to pull the existing SIMMs 
and replace them with high- 
er-capacity SIMMs. 

Another question is 
memory speed, quoted in 


Your Windows programs can run significantly faster when 
you add a Windows accelerator card. 

nanoseconds. Lower num- 
bers are faster. Older 
machines use 100-ns mem- 
ory; newer ones use 70-ns 
SIMMs. Boyd Peterson of 
DeskTop Media in Salt Lake 
City recommends buying 
70-ns chips even if your 
computer has slower mem- 
ory now. The 70s will slow 
down to match the rest of 
the memory, and you'll have 
fast chips should you later 
decide to upgrade your 
system further. 

Memory currently runs 
about $45 to $50 per 
megabyte, making the 
move to 8MB an expensive 
proposition—especially if 
you're starting from 1MB or 
2MB. If you're planning seri- 
ous work with Windows, bite 
the bullet and write the 
check for the full 8MB. 

The Easiest Way to 
Upgrade Memory 

If screwdrivers scare you 
and you're not sure which 
kind of memory chips you 
have or need, take the cow- 
ard's way out. Find a helpful 
dealer and bring your com- 
puter case in. Have the 
dealer open it, figure out 

what kind of chips are 
needed, sell you the memo- 
ry, and install it. The dealer 
can fire up your computer 
and make sure everything 
works before you leave the 


Your computer's display is 
really two components, the 
video card and the monitor. 
If you're moving from EGA 
or VGA to Super VGA 
(SVGA), you'll need both. If 
you're already running 
SVGA, you can upgrade 
one or the other or both. 


A year ago, there were a lot 
of technical questions about 
monitors, such as interlaced 
versus noninterlaced, multi- 
scan versus single scan, 
and VGA versus SVGA. 
Today, most of those ques- 
tions have quietly slipped 
into obscurity, along with 
the older, less desirable 
technology. In other words, 
all monitors today are multi- 
scan, and only ultracheap 
monitors are interlaced. 
And, of course, VGA is 

thoroughly dead — all regu- 
lar PC monitors are SVGA. 

The only questions left 
are dot pitch (a measure of 
how precise and sharp the 
picture is), screen refresh 
rate, and screen size. 
Higher refresh rates do 
away with any hint of flicker 
in the screen image. 

Look for a dot pitch of 
0.28 or smaller; images with 
a larger dot pitch can strain 
your eyes. Standard refresh 
rates of 68 or 70 Hz are OK; 
a 72-Hz screen gives you a 
bright, crisp image under 
almost any circumstances. 

Screen size is totally 
dependent on how much you 
want to pay. Using Windows 
at higher resolutions (800 x 
600 or 1024 x 768) on a 14- 
inch monitor can strain your 
eyes. A 15-inch monitor gives 
a significant increase in size 
and is easier, on the eyes. 
Larger screens are generally 
needed only for highly 
detailed graphics work. 
During the last year, many 
computer sellers have gone 
to the 15-inch monitor as their 

Video Cards 

If you don't have a Windows 
accelerator card or other 
high-speed local-bus video 
card, you're leaving an 
unnecessary speed bottle- 
neck in your system. 
Installing the video card is a 
simple operation, though it 
involves opening the com- 
puter case and swapping 
the existing card for the 
new one. You'll also have to 
deal with installing video 
driver software, but that's 
usually a fairly straightfor- 
ward process. 

Things to look for when 
selecting a new video card 
are speed (get local bus or 
PCi, depending on your 
computer's data bus) and 
memory, with its accompa- 
nying color and resolution 



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capabilities. You'll also want 
to deal with an established 

Each video card requires 
its own video driver soft- 
ware for Windows. The card 
will come with a Windows 
3.1 driver, but when the 
next version of Windows 
arrives, you'll need a new 
video driver. Microsoft may 
not provide the driver, and 
since the video card manu- 
facturer already has your 
money, you can't depend 
on the manufacturer to send 
you the new software. You'll 
need to be able to find the 
driver yourself. Dealing with 
an established company 
that posts its drivers on 
CompuServe or its own BBS 
is the safest course. 

Video memory runs from 
512K to 2MB. You'll want a 
practical minimum of 256 
colors at 800 x 600, which 
requires only 51 2K of video 
memory. Another 512K of 
video memory (for a total of 
1MB) buys you 65,000 col- 
ors at 800 x 600 or 256 col- 
ors at 1024x768, which will 
be enough for anyone with- 
out a megascreen monitor. 
You absolutely need 256 
colors at 640 x 480 (the 
standard DOS-sized screen 
and resolution) to run any 
modern multimedia or game 
software, so don't get less. 


"This is a great time to buy 
hard drives," says Salt Lake 
City mail-order dealer Boyd 
Peterson of DeskTop Media. 
"Prices are less than a dollar 
a megabyte — way down 
from even a year ago." 

If your hard drive is get- 
ting crowded, now is the 
time to act. (Mann's First 
Law of Hard Drives: All hard 
drives, no matter how big, 
have less than 2MB of 
empty space.) 

Although the industry is 


settling in with 200MB to 
250MB for the basic hard 
drive in new computers, 
many lower-priced systems 
come with 170MB drives. 
Even two years ago, that 
sounded like a lot. In 
today's Windows-dominat- 
ed world, 200MB will fill up 
so fast that you'll be looking 
for Stacker in no time. 

With DOS itself taking 
over 6MB, Windows taking 
upwards of 20MB, and any 
self-respecting application 
at all running to 5MB or 
more, hard drive real estate 
becomes scarce amazingly 
fast. If you do Windows 
(and who doesn't, these 
days?), serious applications 
routinely run over 20MB. 
CorelDRAW!, fully installed, 
is the biggest I've run 
across, at 62MB. Trust me: 
If you're any kind of a soft- 
ware junkie, your hard 
drives are perennially full. 
And heaven help you if 
you're a game player — the 
graphics and sound files fill 
hard drives like tribbles fill- 
ing the Enterprise. 

Upgrade Options 

The average person can 
simply buy a new drive and 
install it alongside the old 
drive inside the computer 
case, but there are a few 
complications to bedevil 
owners of older computers. 
Hard drives come in just 
a few basic types. Older 
drives are RLL or MFM types 
(never mind what the letters 
stand for — it's not important). 
Neither type will work in tan- 
dem with a new drive, so if 
you have one of these 
drives, you'll have to replace 
it and its hard drive con- 
troller card. (If you're not 
sure what type your old 
drive is, open the computer 
case and look at the drive. 
The type will almost always 
be on a label on the drive. If 
not, check the number of 

data cables per drive. RLL 
and MFM drives have two, 
while a newer drive has only 

Most drives sold in the 
last few years are IDE 
drives, which work fine in 
tandem with other drives, 
including the other current 
drive type, SCSI (pro- 
nounced "scuzzy"). 

SCSI drives cost a little 
more, so unless their partic- 
ular talents are needed, 
most people stick with IDE. 
Because IDE drives are 
presently limited in size, 
buy SCSI if you need a real- 
ly large drive (though 
there's nothing wrong with 
buying multiple IDE drives 
to get the same capacity). If 
you need heavy throughput, 
you should be aware that 
SCSI drives can deliver up 
to ten megabits per second 
of data transfer, while IDE 
drives max out at four 
megabits per second. A 
newer generation of higher- 
capacity and faster IDE 
drives will be available 
soon, so be sure to shop 

Older drives are slow by 
today's standards, but the 
new drives you can buy are 
all fast enough to keep you 
happy. Consider a 13-ms 
access time as your slowest 
acceptable speed. 


A new hard drive fits in a 
3Vinch drive bay — if it's 
bigger than that, it's old 
technology, and you don't 
want it. Drive bays are 
cagelike affairs in your com- 
puter's case. You'll need a 
bay to hold each drive, 
unless you get a half-height 
drive to share a bay with 
another half-height floppy or 
hard drive. Most computer 
cases have enough drive 
bays for two or more hard 
drives. Unfortunately, many 

Packard Bell and Tandy 
computers (among others) 
come with only three bays, 
which can really cramp your 
style if you want more than 
one hard drive and both 
sizes of floppy drives, to 
say nothing of a CD-ROM 
drive or tape backup unit. 
Half-height drives and 
external units may be the 
solution here. 

You can also buy an 
internal hard drive, known 
as a hard card, which plugs 
into an expansion slot on 
the motherboard rather than 
fitting into a drive bay. Hard 
cards are fast and reliable, 
but they cost more than tra- 
ditional drives. If you're 
fresh out of drive bays, a 
hard card can be the 

If all else fails, you can 
also buy a new computer 
case and transfer all the 
innards of your present 
machine into a roomier 
new case. 


Multimedia computing is a 
fairly recent development. 
While an increasing number 
of computers sold for home 
use today are equipped for 
multimedia, millions of com- 
puters await the happy day 
when they get a multimedia 

What Is Multimedia? 

Multimedia refers to using 
more than one medium to 
present a message. In the 
PC context, that means 
adding sound and video to 
the usual text and graphics. 
Multimedia software is 
everywhere these days, 
usually in the form of CD- 
ROM programs filled with 
glorious music, sound 
effects, and voices along 
with full-motion color video. 














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Spend a few minutes in the 
multimedia section of this 
magazine for a taste of 
what's going on in this 
exciting field. 

Basic Hardware 

The components you need 
to add to a basic computer 
for multimedia compatibility 
are a CD-ROM drive, a 
sound card, and stereo 

The Multimedia Market- 
ing Council has defined 
standards for multimedia 
PCs. The current version is 
MPC-2, which calls for a 
minimum of a 486SX-25 
with 4MB of RAM; a 160MB 
hard drive; a video card 
capable of 640 x 480 with 
65,000 colors; a high-densi- 
ty 3Vinch floppy drive; a 
16-bit sound card; and a 
CD-ROM drive capable of 
sustained throughput of 
300 kilobytes per second. 
That standard, issued in 
May 1993, is a little out-of- 
date. Experience says that 
a 486DX-25 with 8MB of 
RAM and a much bigger 
hard drive is required to run 
a lot of today's multimedia 
software successfully. 

If you have the basic 
computing power, all you 
need to do is add the extra 
components to turn your 
humdrum PC into an inter- 
active entertainment center. 

Upgrade Components 

There are two ways to get 
the necessary stuff for your 
upgrade project. One is to 
buy the components sepa- 
rately and install them. The 
other is to purchase a 
prepackaged multimedia 
upgrade kit. Kits are put 
together by sound card and 
CD-ROM drive manufactur- 
ers to make your life easier. 
If you buy the components 
separately, you run the risk 
of not getting a fine-tuned 
compalibility. Kits are 


If you already have a sound card, you can upgrade to 
multimedia by purchasing a CD-ROM upgrade kit. 

almost always less expen- 
sive than separate compo- 
nents and usually include a 
bundle of outstanding 

Unless you have some 
overriding reason to buy 
separately, I recommend 
buying a kit. I do have 
some advice on selecting a 
kit, however, that I'll present 
component by component. 
This will be highly summa- 
rized information; COM- 
PUTE has covered choos- 
ing CD-ROM drives and 
sound cards at some length 
in recent months. (The full 
text of these COMPUTE arti- 
cles is available on America 
Online for normal connect 

CD-ROM Drives 

The rules here are pretty 
simple. Get double speed 
(which means a transfer 
rate of 300 kilobytes per 
second), match the inter- 
face with your sound board 
(SCSI, IDE, and proprietary 
interfaces are available), 
and choose between a 
caddy-based system and a 
drawer- based system. 
Speed is everything. 

Surprisingly, the new 
triple-speed drives don't 
seem to give much speed 
advantage for normal multi- 
media work, although the 
speed really shows in pure 
data transfer work, accord- 
ing to Boyd Peterson of Salt 
Lake City's DeskTop Media. 

The drive needs to 
match the CD-ROM drive 
controller interface on your 
sound card. I would recom- 
mend a SCSI interface 
because it's the industry 
standard and it allows you 
to swap the drive or sound 
card at any time for newer, 
better hardware. If you get 
a proprietary interface, your 
upgrade options will be 
more limited. 

Whether to put your CD- 
ROMs into a caddy before 
putting them into the drive 
is a matter of personal pref- 
erence. Caddy-based sys- 
tem vendors tell us that 
while fussing with the cad- 
dies is more trouble, the 
innards of the drive remain 
out of harm's way. With 
drawer-based systems, a 
drawer full of drive mecha- 
nism comes out to accept 
the CD-ROM directly. 

Sound Boards 

Hundreds of sound boards 
crowd today's market, con- 
fusing things with various 
proposed standards and 
different ways of doing 
things. Be sure your board 
uses 16-bit technology (vir- 
tually all of them do) and is 
Sound Blaster compatible. 
The sound board usually 
has the CD-ROM drive con- 
troller hardware built in, so 
be sure the board you 
choose has the same inter- 
face as the drive you buy. 
The newest thing in 

sound cards is wave-table 
MIDI sound, which is light 
years ahead of the previous 
FM synthesis technology. If 
you decide to pay a little 
more for the outstanding 
quality of wave-table 
sound, be sure to get a 
board that's fully backward 
compatible with Sound 
Blaster sound — or you 
won't get sound out of 
many older programs. 


These are usually an after- 
thought, though they're 
important to the overall 
quality of the multimedia 
experience. Kits come with 
adequate basic speakers, 
with fancier desktop speak- 
ers coming as a later 
upgrade. For late-night 
work, a personal headset 
keeps the sound from both- 
ering other family members. 

Installing the 
Upgrade Kit 

Whether you go with a kit or 
individually purchased 
components, installing mul- 
timedia on your computer is 
a mixed bag. If you're 
lucky, it goes without a 
hitch. However, you will 
need to do some screwdriv- 
er work and spend some 
time with your software dri- 
vers and system files. 

Our first multimedia kit 
took many hours over three 
days to install; the last one 
took about 20 minutes (I had 
the dealer do it). Until the 
promised Plug and Play 
standards come to life in the 
next year or so, any multime- 
dia installation will involve 
working with IRQs and 
DMAs to resolve potential 
conflicts, so be prepared for 
potential frustration and calls 
to tech support— just in 
case. I always recommend 
installing potentially difficult 
things at a time when tech 
support is open. (j 

Ernie Hemple's 
'rsf essionafQffice 


mie Hemple's PROFESSIONAL 01 
is bawd on his philosophy of Relationship- 
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L Daily Scheduler 
A. To do list ■ Items may be added on a one 

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* Items may he aumtnuiically posiponed lo the 

next day A TO DO LIST may he printed for any 

specific day 

It. Appointment list • Items may be added all 

ai once, Of Oft a daily, weekly .monthly and yearly 

basis » Keyword search for appointments with a 

specific person ■ User -defined, color-coded priori- 

tization for appointments ■ A comment section 

for appointment notes • Alarm clock can be set to 

remind you of appointments ■ Daily appointments 

may be printed nut Also includes: Notepad, Daily 

Quote, and Small Calendar 

2. Journal 

A. Duily Journal • A text box for 
daily entries 

B. Search • Keyword search 
through the journal database to find 
matching entries and list the matching 
dates and tlie first few words of the entries 

C. Small Calendar ■ The day in the journal is 
changed by dieting on different days 

3. Calendar 

A, Monthly Calendar • A monthly calendar ii 
shewn with the number of appointments for each 
day shown on the corresponding day 

B. Appointment List • A list of the limes and 

Relationsmp-Centered Life Management 

10. People 

People Information to add, update and view specific information 

a person including name, address, phone, birthday, anniversaries, spouse, 
<\ gift register, relationship register, con 
, l pcoming Events * Upcoming cvimis i n ihc lives of people arc shown as well as % 

^upcoming holidays * Different cate- 
gories of events am he shown, such \ 
all birthdays, weddings, winivcj- 

llulidays * A listing of major 
holidays are personalized by delei- i 
ing uncelebrated holidays, adding • 
personal holidays, or adding 
sonal messages tm a specific date 
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roups or companies io find peo- 1 
le by classification, gender, pri- f 
Orfty, or lype ol entry 
1 E, Interest * Look at peo- 
r'rom a list of 
I editable interest boxes, Stare 
information on favorite places,^ 
food, collectable?*, Sports 

£ appointments for the selected day on the monthly cal- 


endar is shown 

4. Goals 

A. Long term Goals • A register showing your 
long term goals is shown. Clicking on any goal in 
that register will pull up all information about the 
goal including expected completion date, and steps to 
complete the goal. You may add, edit or delete goals 

B. Short term Goals • Same as long term goals 

C. Relationship Goals • A name register taken 
from the people database will show a list of goals for 
the person selected. Goals can be added, deleted and 
edited for each person in the people database. Goals 
also includes the expected completion date and a 
"What I Can Do to Help" comment box, 

5. Travel section 

• Quick access travel information will be stored. The company name, and tele- 
phone number will be stored for airlines, hotels, trains, travel agencies, rental 
car agencies, and misc. ways of travel. 

6. Gift Section • Different categories of gifts will be shown, such as 
flowers, clothing, jewelry, gourmet foods, travel packages, gift certificates, 
sporting goods, electronics, music, etc. 

7. Ideas/Projects 

• Allows user to define multiple topics, people involved in these topics, the 
ideas associated with them and expected completion dates. 

8. Family 

• Lets people keep track of family activities and family members and helps user 
schedule future quality activities with family. 

9. Proposals 

• Templates of different types of business letters, 
including proposals, contracts, and templates of 
resumes and fax -cover sheets 

■(cam*, musical instruments. 
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1 A,BI1liriKTimer' Enter 
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■hilling • Enter billing rale by 
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■Select currency symbols ■ 
■Transfer information io an 
■ invoice Sl a receivable ledger. 
| Also Includes: Alarm Clock, 
I Calculator. A Mo-Dialer, and 
I Conversions Tool 
} 12. Money 

A, Accounts Register 
Check writing and 
] printing. ■ Keeps track 

HBH0 of checking, saving-S 
"~ JW^Hfji] crecut > accounts, etc. - 
Maintains a transact ion 
[register for each account 

B. Budget - Allows 
the creation of budgets 
!(eg. yearly, monthly, 
daily, company party, 
family vacations, etc.) • 
Provides full-color graphs 
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C. Invoices • Creates, 
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D. Ledger • Keeps track 
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E. FAX Ordering • Keeps 
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#'s and shipping addresses. 
Makes sending gifts to per- 
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The temperature wasn't the only thing heating 
up at the recent COMDEX in Atlanta. Much of 
the computer show was devoted to the hottest 
growth area in computing: multimedia soft- 
ware and hardware. 

On the software side, 7th Level (214-437-4858) threw a 
big COMDEX party to launch Monty Python's Flying 
Circus's Secret to Intergalactic Success [Earth Edition]. The 
CD-ROM is full of clips from the popular television series, as 
well as animation from Python animator, Terry Gilliam. The 
highlight of the evening was the crowd's singing "The 
Lumberjack Song" in sync with the program. 

Back on the floor of the show, Virgin (800- 
874-4607) demonstrated The 11th Hour; 
Sequel to The 7th Guest, which con 
tains twice as much full-motion video 
as its predecessor. Living Books 
(800-521-6263) previewed two 
new Living Books: Ruff's Bone 
and Little Monster at School, 
Ruff's Bone grew from a col- 
laboration between Broder- 
bund and (Colossal)Pic- 
tures and is the funniest 
Living Book so far. Like 
the first Living Book, Just 
Grandma and Me, Little 
Monster at School is 
based on a children's 
book by Mercer Mayer. 
Grolier Electronic Publish 
ing (203-797-3500) demon- 
strated 1994 Guinness Multi- 
media Disc of Records 
($49.95), which includes the 
paperback version of Guinness 
Book of Records. 

Other new CD-ROM titles a 
COMDEX included Medio Magazine 
(Medio Multimedia, 206-867-5500, $9.95 per 
issue or $59.95 for a 12-month subscription), a fam. 
ly-oriented CD-ROM magazine with special emphasis on 
news, entertainment, and education; Millennium Auction 
(Eidolon, 718-884-7095, $69.95), a futuristic art auction 
game with highly realistic 3-D characters; Lower Your 
Score with Tom Kite (IntelliPlay, 800-357-5237, $79.95), 
a golf-training CD-ROM that features professional 
instruction through live-action video; and CD-ROMANCE 
(Romulus Productions, 800-266-4557, $49.95), a CD- 
ROM-based singles magazine with photos, video clips, 
and profile screens of eligible men and women. 

Disk-based multimedia software at COMDEX includ- 
ed the multimedia presentation program Action 3.0 

(Macromedia, 800-756-9603, $199.00 for the disk ver- 
sion and $299.00 for the CD-ROM version with 230MB 
of ClipMedia), which now includes an outliner, spelling 
checker, and 300 templates; MediaStudio (Ulead 
Systems, 310-523-9393, $349.00), which includes video 
capture, video editor, audio editor, image editor, morph 
editor, media management, screen capture, and file 
conversion modules in a single package; MediaShop 
(Motion Works, 415-541-9333, $299.00 with Visual Basic 
and $249.00 without Visual Basic until August 31, 1994, 
and then $695.00 and $595.00, respectively), which adds 
a complete set of multimedia tools to Visual Basic, 
Visual C++, and other popular languages; and 
Melody Maestro (Blue Ribbon Software, 
404-315-0212, $79.95), which lets you 
sing into the included microphone 
nd have the program convert 
your melody into a full MIDI- 
based song using a variety of 
musical styles. 

On the hardware side, 
TEAC (213-726-0303) in- 
roduced its SuperQuad 
4X AT CD-ROM drive, a 
quad-speed CD-ROM 
drive with a list price of 
$750. MediaMagic (800- 
624-8654) announced the 
Telemetry-32 ($399), a 
combination audio, mo- 
dem, and telephony board 
that uses a new AT&T DSP 
chip for truly simultaneous 
audio, voice, and data func- 
tions. Creative Labs (800-988- 
5227) previewed an expansion 
board that lets you play 3DO soft- 
ware on a standard MPC Level 2 IBM- 
compatible PC. It should be available this 
winter, though no price was announced, 
Roland (213-685-5141) showed its Roland 
SoundCanvas DB ($229), a wave-table MIDI daughter- 
board for Sound Blaster 16 sound cards; it offers a 
dedicated microprocessor for more expressive 
sounds. ALR (800-444-4ALR) showed a similar wave- 
table daughterboard, called the ALR Kurzweil Wave 
Express Module ($399). It uses the Kurzweil chip set, 
which has the best MIDI piano I've heard. And Turtle 
Beach (800-645-5640) demonstrated the Turtle Beach 
Daytona ($499). It's a high-end PCMCIA sound card 
that includes 16-bit audio, 128 wave-table General 
MIDI sounds, and the ability to sample WAV files and 
use them as MIDI instruments. □ 


By Scott A. May 

For the first time in 
generations, some- 
thing new and excit- 
ing has been added 
to students' typically boring 
back-to-school shopping 
lists: CD-ROMs. From pre- 
schoolers to postgraduates, 
today's multimedia educa- 
tional software is changing 
the way we learn. 

But is it truly a new way to 
learn? Or is it simply a new 
twist on old audiovisual teach- 
ing tools? Any way you look at 
it, there's no doubt that multi- 
media makes learning fun. 
Students love it because it lets 
them advance at their own 
pace. This new technology 
can also be a teacher's best 
friend, easing the load in over- 
crowded classrooms. Though 
never meant to be a surrogate 
parent or teacher — or a 
replacement for textbooks — 
multimedia software gives stu- 
dents dynamic one-on-one 
instruction that they might not 
otherwise get. 

What follows is just a 
small sample of multimedia's 
growing number of educa- 
tional titles. By combining tra- 
ditional text with elements of 
sight and sound, these CD- 
ROM titles help make learn- 
ing more fun and rewarding. 

Early Explorations 

Most people agree that the 
first few years of informal 
learning are crucial to a 
child's educational develop- 
ment. Little minds are like 
sponges, eager to absorb the 
sights and sounds of the 
world that surrounds them. 
Children respond immediate- 
ly to cute and colorful charac- 
ters, interacting in settings 
they can identify with. Once a 
personal connection is made, 
the door swings wide open to 
new worlds of learning. 
Introduce preschoolers to 

a miniature world of interac- 
tivity with four titles based on 
the work of renowned chil- 
dren's author Richard Scarry: 
Busytown ($49.95) and How 
Things Work in Busytown 
($59.95) from Paramount 
Interactive (418-813-8055), 
and Busiest Neighborhood 
Ever ($49.95) and Best 
Neighborhood Ever ($49.95) 
from Activision (800-477- 
3650). Busytown is designed 
for children 3 to 7 and con- 
tains 12 discovery-oriented 
areas in a cartoonlike town. 
The program's 13 original 
songs are tied directly to the 
activities the children see on 
the screen. While Busytown 
teaches children how to per- 
form individual tasks, How 
Things Work in Busytown 
shows them how to combine 
tasks to create a working 
community. Children learn to 
count, recognize words, and 
solve problems by participat- 
ing in a variety of activities, 
including harvesting wheat 
and assembling machines. 

In Busiest Neighborhood 
Ever and Best Neighborhood 
Ever, kids 3 and up are once 
again encouraged to discov- 
er the animated avenues of 
Busytown, where characters 
work and play in a flurry of 
friendly activity. Shops of all 
varieties open their doors for 
close, hands-on inspection: 
bakery, doctor's office, TV 
station, music store, produce 
market, art studio, and many 
more. Included here are 
memory exercises, music 
appreciation, problem solv- 
ing and creative thinking, 
and simple math and geom- 
etry. Language comprehen- 
sion and word recognition 
are also heavily stressed, 
using expressive verbal rein- 
forcement. Just as important, 
the programs help kids 
grasp basic social concepts 

and how people— or dogs, 
cats, and pigs, in this case — 
can live and work together as 
a community. 

Learning to Read 

Simply put, learning to read 
with multimedia software is a 
match made in heaven. 
Expecting a child to launch 
into books on his or her own 
isn't fair, but let's face it- 
some families find it difficult 
to devote enough time to this 
extremely important stage of 
development. CD-ROMs, on 
the other hand, are tireless 
readers and thrive on the 
repetition kids need to learn 
word association, pronuncia- 
tion, sentence structure, and 
story forms. Toss in colorful 
animation, speech, music, 
and sound, and you have the 
makings of some powerful 
teaching tools. The following 
are excellent examples of 
what educators call whole 
language learning. 

Take a solid first step 
toward reading with Sound It 
Out Land 1 and 2 (Conexus, 
800-545-7677, $49.95 each), 
a pair of early learning soft- 
ware titles for Windows, 
aimed at preschool- and 
kindergarten-aged children. 
With its carnival setting and 

friendly cartoon characters, 
each program gently intro- 
duces kids to the basics of 
consonant, vowel, and whole 
word pronunciation. The first 
volume sticks to simple three- 
letter words, while the second 
tackles slightly more compli- 
cated four-letter words, with 
an emphasis on enunciation. 
Your tour guides in both titles 
are Vowel Owl, Singalong 
Sam, Reading Robot, and 
Tucan Read, who reinforce 
their lessons with songs and 
interactive games. 

Who Wants Arthur? 
(Media Vision, 800-684-6699, 
$39.95) is just one title in an 
extraordinary series of early 
learning software called 
Professor Gooseberry's I Can 
Read Club. Here, you'll meet 
Arthur, a lively but lonely little 
brown dog, who will try any- 
thing to find a loving home. 
Children navigate the story in 
one of four modes. Look and 
Listen reads the story out 
loud, without text or interac- 
tivity. Read with Me adds 
onscreen text and slows the 
narration, allowing kids to 
better follow the words, pro- 
nunciations, and story flow. 
Think About the Story pre- 
sents an interactive exercise 
in word recognition, associa- 



tion, and meaning, as kids 
advance the story by filling in 
missing words. Finally, You 
Read lets you read alone, 
with optional spoken assis- 
tance for difficult words and 

Another good example of 
whole language learning is 
Sitting on the Farm (Sanctuary 
Woods, 800-872-3518, 
$59.95), a multicultural Win- 
dows product with your 
choice of English, French, or 
Spanish. Written by Bob King 
and illustrated by Bill Slavin, 
the whimsical short story tells 
about a little girl's picnic that's 
disrupted by a wacky parade 
of hungry farmyard animals. 
In addition to the standard 
Listen-Along and Read-Along 
play modes, the program 
offers something unique: 
Sing-Along, a mini karaoke- 
style feature that lets you 
record and play back your 
voice — using a microphone 
plugged into your sound 
card — accompanied by the 
audio-CD musical sound- 
track. The program's most 
advanced section, Write- 
Along, lets kids modify key 
words of the existing story 
and then encourages them to 
create their own tales set in 
one of six exotic locations. 

Perhaps the best-known 
collection of multimedia read- 
ing products is the outstand- 
ing Living Books series for 
Windows from Broderbund/ 
Living Books (800-521-6263). 
One of the top picks of the 
bunch is The New Kid on the 
Block ($39.95), a sensational 
introduction to poetry, featur- 
ing the offbeat verse of Jack 
Prelutsky and delightful illus- 
trations by James Stevenson. 
From leaking babies to danc- 
ing bananas, the disc's 18 
poems will have you laughing 
so hard that you might not 
realize you're learning sophis- 
ticated word associations, 
rhyming patterns, and narra- 
tive structure. Other first-rate 
titles include Just Grandma 
and Me ($39.95), based on 
Mercer Mayer's classic Little 
Critter books and featuring 
narration in English, Spanish, 
and Japanese; Aesop's The 
Tortoise and the Hare 
($39.95); and Arthur's 
Teacher Trouble ($49.95) by 
Marc Brown. 

Let your imagination run 
wild with Wiggins in Storyland 
(Media Vision, $59.95), a cre- 
ative writing tool for Windows 
that lets kids produce their 
own illustrated books. Wig- 
gins the Bookworm guides 



you through the step-by-step 
process of choosing animat- 
ed backgrounds, characters, 
and props, each available in 
dozens of mix-and-match 
varieties. Once the setting is 
depicted on the right-hand 
page, the Word Duck offers 
suggestions for descriptive 
nouns, adjectives, and verbs 
to use in constructing your 
story on the left-hand page. 
Having trouble getting start- 
ed? Writer's block is no prob- 
lem in Storyland— just click 
on the Idea Light Bulb for 
help with opening sentences. 
There's even a recording stu- 
dio where you can add per- 
sonal narration to the story. 
Books can be printed in a 
variety of fonts, with the 
option of rendering pictures 
in high contrast to produce a 
coloring book. Expertly con- 
structed, the program deliv- 
ers an exciting hands-on, 
multimedia introduction to 
grammar, story structure, and 
creative thinking. 

Discovering the World 

It's a big world out there, 
filled with more interesting 
people, places, and things 
than most of us could fit into 
five lifetimes. When curiosity 
beckons, today's multimedia 
software answers the call, 
with dynamic presentations 
of sight, sound, and informa- 
tive text. The following titles 
attempt to fully address a 
particular topic of interest 
and are suitable for middle- 
school-aged kids to adults. 

Visit the world-famous 
San Diego Zoo with The 
Animals (Software Toolworks, 
800-234-3088, $59.95), a 
firsthand look at more than 
300 exotic exhibits. The pro- 
gram's colorful 3-D overhead 
map makes park navigation 
a breeze, dividing species 
among their natural biocli- 

matic zones, or biomes: trop- 
ical forests, deserts, grass- 
lands, savannas, polar 
regions, islands, and more. 
Each biome contains dozens 
of exhibits, featuring pho- 
tographs, authentic animal 
sounds, movies, and text. 
Just like the real San Diego 
Zoo, this disc is exceptionally 
well organized, encouraging 
both sequential tours and 
random information safaris. 
More than just a collection of 
animal pictures, the program 
strongly promotes global 
ecological responsibility. 

In a similar vein, although 
slightly less ambitious, is 
Mammals: A Multimedia En- 
cyclopedia (National Geo- 
graphic Society, 800-368- 
2728, $99). Choose your sub- 
jects by name or order from 
the mouse-driven menus. 
Each listing summons an ani- 
mal fact sheet, with informa- 
tion on the animal's habits, 
population status, average 
size, average weight, and 
average lifespan, as well as 
the food it eats. The disc con- 
tains hundreds of lo-res pho- 
tos, maps, animal sounds, 
and 45 full-motion video clips 
from National Geographic's 
TV specials. 

Take a multimedia plunge 
into Oceans Below (Software 
Toolworks, $49.95), a fasci- 
nating tour of our underwater 
world. Visit key coastal areas 
around the globe — from the 
Fiji Islands to the Red Sea— 
in search of exotic fish, mam- 
mals, and plant life. Keep 
your eyes peeled for ship- 
wrecks and buried treasure, 
too. The MPC presentation is 
breathtaking, featuring hun- 
dreds of video clips (inge- 
niously framed by a diver's 
mask), colorful photos, and 
informative narration. 

Turn your CD-ROM drive 
into a time machine with 


Microsoft Dinosaurs (Micro- 
soft, 800-426-9400, $64.95) 
and Prehistoria (Grolier 
Electronic Publishing, 800- 
285-4534, $69.95), two 
equally stunning multimedia 
expeditions for Windows. 
Both titles offer detailed 
descriptions and beautifully 
drawn illustrations of hun- 
dreds of prehistoric crea- 
tures, sorted into 11 time peri- 
ods and seven species — and 
cross-referenced. Tongue- 
tied by those colossal crea- 
ture names? Both programs 
feature onscreen audio 
prompts to let you hear each 
name clearly pronounced. 
Dinosaurs offers narrated 
guided tours but encourages 
spontaneous browsing via 
"hot" words and phrases that 
provide links to related topics. 
Grolier's effort is far more 
academic and perhaps more 
useful as a reference source. 
Both allow you to copy text 
and dinosaur pictures to the 
Clipboard or save them to 
disk. Though Microsoft 
boasts the better audio and 
video quality, Grolier is the 
hands-down multimedia win- 
ner, with more than 60 min- 
utes of fascinating videos and 
animations, many hosted by 
renowned paleontologists. 

From weird to wonderful, 
Science Adventure II (Know- 
ledge Adventure, 800-542- 
4240, $79.95) offers a nearly 
perfect example of edutain- 
ment. Coauthored by the late 
Isaac Asimov, this is easily 
the publisher's best title to 
date — a mind-expanding tour 
de force of science fact and 
fiction, augmented with 
superb narration, video clips, 
and cutting-edge graphic 
animation. Designed as a vir- 
tual-reality science laboratory, 
the program includes Dr. 
Zoom's Jail of Bogus 
Science, a multimedia micro- 


scope, a science theater, and 
numerous interactive experi- 
ments. Beyond the program's 
inherent educational qualities, 
its greatest success is its abil- 
ity to spark imagination and 
encourage further exploration 
of its diverse subject matter. 

Picture Atlas of the World 
(National Geographic So- 
ciety, $99) is your passport to 
a multimedia journey around 
the globe. As you'd expect 

ers can't appreciate what they 
don't understand, music 
scholar Robert Winter hosts 
an interactive journey through 
the life of Austrian composer 
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, 
using his String Quartet in C 
Major as the musical center- 
piece. The product is informa- 
tive and surprisingly entertain- 
ing, successfully conveying 
the passion of the man and 
his music. 

Pic flo Help 

North America 
^■ r (New Mexico) 

Tjpw 20 ft/6 m long 

Learn about ancient creatures with Grolier's Prehistoria. 

from its source, this DOS- 
based title is packed with 
over 1200 expressive pho- 
tographs, along with more 
than 800 interactive maps, 
ethnic music, and speech 
samples of more than 100 
languages. Ideal for social 
studies, the disc presents 
updated statistics for each 
nation's population, econo- 
my, religions, climates, indus- 
tries, and more. 

Experience "the most sub- 
lime form of communication" 
with Multimedia Mozart: The 
Dissonant Quartet (Microsoft, 
$64.95), the third offering in a 
series that takes you behind 
the scenes of the world's most 
timeless music. Working from 
the theory that modern listen- 

Passion and whimsy of a 
different sort come alive in 
Twain's World (Bureau of 
Electronic Publishing, 201- 
808-2700, $39.95), a celebra- 
tion and study of American 
author and humorist Samuel 
Clemens. Included here are 
the complete works of Twain, 
both fiction and nonfiction, as 
well as various biographical 
pieces describing his life and 
inspirations. You'll also see 
rare film clips of the author, 
narrated passages from 
famous books, and a slide 
show of his colorful characters. 

To gain sharper focus on 
more current events, turn to 
Newsweek Interactive (Soft- 
ware Toolworks, $29.95 
each), an ongoing series of 

electronic publications that 
archive three months of 
Newsweek magazine — 12 
issues — with full text and topic 
search functions. This DOS- 
based program utilizes Super 
VGA graphics to create a 
stunning multimedia presen- 
tation, including more than 
four hours of radio interviews, 
videos, and even commer- 
cials. It's all extremely well 
designed and perfect for 
classroom instruction. Multi- 
media features in the first 
issues include Unfinished 
Business, a lively discussion 
of worldwide ecological prob- 
lems and solutions; Globo- 
cop, an interactive look at 
America's latest role as global 
peacekeeper; Behind the 
Screens, the art of Hollywood 
special effects; and What Ails 
Us, an in-depth look at the 
current healthcare debate. 

Preparing for College 

When CD-ROM technology 
emerged, one of its top sell- 
ing points was its potential for 
interactive, multimedia refer- 
ence guides. With data stor- 
age exceeding 600MB per 
disc, we imagined how smart 
we'd become, with volumes 
of sights, sounds, and text at 
our command! Guess what? 
This vision not only has come 
true but, in many cases, has 
exceeded our wildest 
dreams. Combined with Win- 
dows' multitasking and data- 
sharing capabilities, the fol- 
lowing MPC titles are invalu- 
able tools for research and 

Leading the pack, in terms 
of sheer quality of presenta- 
tion, is Microsoft Encarta 
(Microsoft, $99), a multimedia 
encyclopedia bursting with 
style and vitality. Based on 
the Funk & Wagnalls 29-vol- 
ume reference library, the 
package dazzles the senses 

Award of Merit Winner 


1994 Multimedia Awards 

Award Winner 
Game Bytes Magazine 


"Jutland provides an object lesson in 
what CD ROM sims can achieve," 

- PC Entertainment 

"Jutland is an impressive game. . . . 
another of my top ten games of the year!" 
- Computer Game Review 

#&fo* * MesL Mtn * iron 

Command The Most 
Powerful Warships of WWI 

Test your knowledge of tactics, skill 
at seamanship, and daring in battle 
as you fight either the German 
Imperial Fleet or the British Royal 
Navy in the greatest of all modern 
naval battles, the Battle of Jutland. 

With 100-plus missions and battles, 
Jutland provides hours of game play 
with no two identical outcomes. 
Historical realism brings the drama, 
action, and excitement of real-time 
naval combat to life. Stunning 3D 
and rendered SVGA and VGA 
graphics, digitized audio and video, 
realistic sound effects, and cinematic 
sequences with actual WWI news 
footage enable you to see and hear 
the battle in all its force: metal hitting 
metal, enemy shells whizzing 
overhead, and ships slowly capsizing 
among the chaos of smoke and 

Available now at your favorite retailer 

or order direct by calling 


© 1 994 Software Sorcery. 'Software Sorcery - Where Magic is 
State-of-the-Art', and 'JUTLAND', are trademarks of Software Sorcery. 

Circle Reader Service Number 108 


Where Magic is State-of-the-Art! 

5405 Morehouse Drive, Suite 200 

San Diego, CA 92121 


with more than eight hours of 
16-bit sound, hundreds of film 
clips and animations, nearly 
8000 Super VGA pho- 
tographs and illustrations, 
charts, a dictionary, a the- 
saurus, an atlas, time lines, 
and full-length updated arti- 
cles. Almost any text or 
graphics can be printed or 
copied to another Windows 
application. Multiple search 
engines let you pinpoint arti- 
cles or topic groups in a 
flash. The program encour- 
ages thoughtful browsing, 
however, with a branching 
display structure that caters 
to our natural curiosity. 

Another solid choice for 
college-bound students is 
Compton's Interactive Ency- 
clopedia (Compton's New 
Media, 800-216-6116, $149). 
Like the previous title, 
Compton's product makes 
outstanding use of multime- 
dia bells and whistles, featur- 
ing hundreds of high-quality 
video clips, animations, 
sound files, and slide shows. 
Based on the publisher's own 
26-volume hardcover ency- 
clopedia, the CD-ROM 
boasts several innovations 
unique to the genre, including 
Info Pilot, a sensational topic 
search function that automati- 
cally finds three levels of 
information subsets for each 
primary topic. Another terrific 
feature is Virtual Workspace, 
which, depending on your 
computer's available memo- 
ry, can simulate a desktop 
area a few dozen feet 
square — like spreading a 
stack of open books on a 
large library table. Also 
included are a world atlas, 
graphic time line, dictionary, 
and thesaurus, all integrated 
with hypertext jumps, intelli- 
gent searching, and full 
Clipboard support for outside 


A third comprehensive ref- 
erence source is New Grolier 
Multimedia Encyclopedia 
(Grolier Electronic Publishing, 
$395). Though it lacks the 
visual panache of its peers, 
the program earns high marks 
for blazing speed and depth 
of information. The bulk of the 
material here — based on the 
publisher's 21-volume Aca- 
demic American Encyclo- 
ped/a— unfolds as a series of 
cascading text windows and 
deeply nested topic trees. As 
a source for encyclopedic 
research, this product may be 
the most academically pure, 
with full print and Clipboard 
support for external applica- 
tions. Beneath its rather aus- 
tere facade, however, lurk 
some surprising multimedia 
gems, such as the full-length 
Knowledge Explorer audiovi- 
sual essays and animated 
Multimedia Maps, as well as 
hundreds of video clips and 
sound files. 

Arthur was a very ordinary dog. 

He lived in Mrs. number's Pet Shop 
with many -ltficr animals. 
BuLArihur was the onJy dog. 

vm c.3 ca f<m &£ 

Media Vision's Who Wants Arthur? 

If any title merits must- 
have status for college-bound 
students, it's Microsoft 
Bookshelf '94 (Microsoft, $99), 
the ultimate multimedia refer- 
ence collection. Just a listing 
of its seven integrated 
works — all recently updat- 
ed—is enough to sell this 
impressive package: Roget's 
Thesaurus, American Her- 
itage Dictionary, The Concise 
Columbia Encyclopedia, 
Hammond Intermediate 
World Atlas, The Columbia 
Dictionary of Quotations, The 

People's Chronology and The 
World Almanac and Book of 
Facts. Bookshelf functions 
great as a stand-alone refer- 
ence library or integrates 
seamlessly within almost any 
Windows application. Multi- 
volume searches are ex- 
tremely fast, with full Clip- 
board support for both text 
and pictures. Multimedia fea- 
tures include more than 
80,000 spoken pronuncia- 
tions, dozens of audio clips, 
national anthems, animations, 
and full-motion video. An 
invaluable tool — and quite a 
bargain. It just doesn't get 
much better than this. 

Turn your PC into an 
instant literary archive with 
Library of the Future, Third 
Edition (World Library, 800- 
443-0238, $149.95), featuring 
unabridged text from over 
1750 titles. A showcase for 
CD-ROM's incredible storage 
capacity and database func- 
tions, this latest edition fea- 
tures the complete works of 
Aesop, Hans Christian An- 
dersen, Aristotle, William 
Cullen Bryant, Lewis Carroll, 
Arthur Conan Doyle, the 
Brothers Grimm, John Keats, 
Rudyard Kipling, Edgar Allan 
Poe, William Shakespeare, 
Oscar Wilde, and dozens 
more. Despite its size, the 
CD-ROM performs speedy 
searches using as many as 
eight different criteria. Text 
can be read onscreen, print- 
ed, or copied to other appli- 
cations. New to the Third 
Edition are movie clips based 
on literary classics. 

If you love books, you'll 
also enjoy reading between 
the lines with Monarch Notes 
for Windows (Bureau of 
Electronic Publishing, $79.95), 
a multimedia study guide to 
the works of 226 famous 
authors. Included are critical 
essays, detailed biographies, 

notable excerpts, synopses, 
and bibliographies. Multi- 
media embellishments include 
hundreds of narrated pas- 
sages, author photographs, 
and some of the best-quality 
video clips of any product 
mentioned here. 

Monarch Notes for Windows 

Whether you're out to 
write a best-selling novel or 
simply your next term paper, 
good typing skills are essen- 
tial. Learn from an expert with 
Mavis Beacon Teaches 
Typing (Software Toolworks, 
$59.95), a celebrated com- 
puter tutorial available in an 
MPC version. Once you 
determine your goals and set 
your pace, follow Mavis's 
suggested lesson plan to 
develop speed and accura- 
cy. The program automatical- 
ly generates bar charts to 
track your progress and pin- 
point weak areas needing 
more practice. Appealing to 
all age groups and abilities, 
this program is essential for 
students preparing for col- 
lege, as well as for anyone 
needing an edge in the com- 
petitive job market. 

Earning Your Diploma 

As you can see from the vari- 
ety and depth of these titles, 
educational and reference 
CD-ROMs can be an excel- 
lent supplement to a formal 
education— beginning with 
preschool and kindergarten 
and continuing all the way 
through college and post- 
doctoral studies. □ 

New From 


The Interactive, 
To Get Your Head 

Introducing ESPN Golf, Baseball 
and Football, all by IntelliPlay' 

Interactive, championship coaching that 
builds real skills for real players. With 
exciting sound, graphics and super-real 
sports action for your Multimedia PC or 

Multimedia Way 
In The Game 

Top athletes show you exactly how it's done. 

Tom Kite shows you how to lower your score with 
championship shot-making, driving and putting 
techinques. And majar- 
college football and 
baseball players deman- 

You get personalized coach 
ing from big-name winners 

Like Tom Kite, 1992 U.S. Open Champion 
ond golf's all-time money winner. Cooch 
Ron Fraser, two-time national boseball 
chomp ot the University of 
Miami, and U.S. Baseball 
Cooch in the 1992 Olympic 
Games. And Coach Bill Lewis, 

Ts 1991 college football 
Cooch Of The Yeor and his 
Georgia Tech staff. 

strate winning fundamentals in 
live-action games, scrimmages and 

Is. Positian-by-position. Skill-by- 
Multimedia PC skill. With valuable coaching every 
step of the way. You 
learn at your own 
pace. Only ESPN and 
IntelliPlay give you a 
personal multimedia 
coach who's always 
ready to help you 
skills. So call 1-800-357-5237 
now for names of ESPN and IntelliPlay 
dealers. And get your head in the gome. 


Total Sports Instruction 


Published by Intermedia Sports, 
IntelliPlay is a registered trademark of Intellimedia Sports, Inc. ESPN is a registered 

Inc., Two Piedmont Center, Suite 300, Atlanta, Georgia 30305. Phone (404) 262-0000. Fox (404) 261-2282. 
of ESPN, Inc. The Multimedia PC logo is a certification mark of the Multimedia PC Marketing Council, Inc. 3D0 and the 3D0 logo are trademarks of The 3D0 Company. 
Circle Reader Service Number 121 



Kids Go Multimedia 

Here's a product that lets you 
create published documents 
and multimedia presentations 
using video, photos, sound 
effects, music, and printed 
elements. Intended for stu- 
dents ages 10 and up, The 
Multimedia Workshop has 

presented on a computer or 
exported to videotape. It can 
also be used to produce 
desktop-published newslet- 
ters, fliers, greeting cards, 
illustrated reports, and maga- 
zines. For example, students 
could create a video year- 
book combining school 

Create your own multimedia with 
three integrated components: 
The Writing Workshop, The 
Video Workshop, and The 
Paint Workshop. It also lets 
you create five libraries of 
sounds or images with cate- 
gories such as history, the 
family, holidays, food, ani- 
mals, around the world, and 

"The Multimedia Work- 
shop follows The Cruncher in 
Davidson's line of 'Power 
Tools.' These tools are 
designed to empower stu- 
dents to think, analyze, and 
communicate," says Jan 
Davidson, president and 
founder of Davidson & 
Associates. Its goal is to build 
writing, creativity, planning, 
and communication skills. 

The program can be used 
to create video book reports 
and photo essays, where the 
photos, video clips, sound, 
music, and narration can be 

Davidson's Multimedia Workshop. 
events, a theme song created 
by the music department, nar- 
ration by faculty and students, 
and title slides and illustrations 
from the art department. 
Similarly, you could use the 
program to chronicle a field 
trip, create a family-history 
year in review, or prepare a 
birthday greeting. 

Davidson & Associates 



Circle Reader Service Number 530 

The Thrill of Victory 

Talk about instant replay. 
Now you can view 1993 
sports events again and 
again. Sports Illustrated 1994 
Multimedia Sports Almanac 
is the first multisport CD- 
ROM with 40 minutes of 
entertaining highlights and 
an entire year of Sports 
Illustrated magazine. 

View highlights from the 
Super Bowl, World Series, 
NBA finals, and NCAA Final 
Four. In addition, there's a 
sports almanac with more 
than 1200 pages of team and 
individual records, statistics, 
and trivia, as well as over 450 
color photos from Sports 
Illustrated photographers. 

You'll see Michael Jordan 
lead the Chicago Bulls to their 
third world championship, as 
well as the personal triumph 
of New York Jets player 
Dennis Byrd as he walks 
back onto the gridiron after 
having been paralyzed ten 
months earlier. You can also 
test your knowledge of sports 
with a sports trivia game. 

StarPress Multimedia 



Circle Reader Service Number 531 

Multimedia on America 

MPC Headquarters is one of 
the newest electronic forums 
on America Online. Spon- 
sored by the Multimedia PC 
Marketing Council, it's de- 
signed to answer questions 

and stimulate discussion 
about the MPC platform. 

One of the key features 
found in this forum is 
Multimedia PC Titles Catalog. 
It offers descriptions and 
screen shots of more than 
150 MPC titles and includes 
audio and video demos of 
many of them. The forum also 
offers information about the 
MPC Level 1 and 2 specifica- 
tions, Council and MPC 
licensee news, and product 
announcements. Plus, it pro- 
vides bulletin boards that you 
can use to post technical 
questions, offer comments 
about MPC issues, and make 
suggestions about the future 
of the MPC specification. 

Multimedia PC Marketing 

Circle Reader Service Number 532 

FM on PC 

Listen up, radio fans. Now 
you can use your computer 
screen to tune in your favorite 
songs. With RadioActive, you 
can listen to your favorite 
radio station while working on 
your PC. 

Sports Illustrated 1994 Multimedia Sports Almanac. 



haos reigns aboard the space station <f W ej 
nutations. Cyborg security robots roam the corri 
ill is SHODAN, the ruthless super-computer that 

orrible gene. 

din lidul uu tbjJi&iiuiL t\l lift !ia3 
ij jjti-jj tuujrjl u J all jiuiluu 'ju : j/uii'jiij^ 

A/ill you be able to fight your way through and destroy SHODAN - from within? 

Explore a totally immersive 3-D world with sophisticated physics. Jump, lean around 
oners, climb ledges, crawl through shafts -even fly with rocket boots -all from a 
ightning-fast first-person perspective. Tailor the gameplay to your favorite style. 
Change difficulty levels for combat, cyberspace, puzzles or plot. "Jack in" to the 
omputer itself to steal information, hack security systems and grapple with cyber- 

For a great game experience, use an 
Pentium™ processor-based system. 
Intel products, call 1-800-756-8766. 

Ijg, C j V&&' t/ ^ ^ Actual screens may vary. A Stand-Alone Game. Mode in U.S.A. 


Afli is a regKleied Iiodemi 

Circle Reader Service Number 115 


Through an easy-to-use 
graphical interface, this prod- 
uct features point-and-c!ick 

Transform your PC into a radio. 

control for all functions, such 
as volume control, manual or 
autoscan tuning, the ability to 
store as many as 100 radio 
stations and display each 
station's name and frequen- 
cy, eight preset station but- 
tons for your favorite radio 
stations, a mute function, 
clock or frequency display, 
and a fine-tune adjustment. 

RadioActive's scheduling 
function can be programmed 
to turn on and tune in to your 
favorite station at a certain 
time, and when the window is 
minimized, the icon displays 
the radio station that's cur- 
rently being played. 

The product consists of a 
half-size internal circuit card, 
which fits into any available 
slot in a PC. The software 
interface provides all of the 
user controls and radio fea- 
tures. RadioActive won't inter- 
fere with other applications or 
slow down your system. 

Novex Technologies 



Circle Reader Service Number 533 

That's Entertainment 

Now you can follow the car- 
toon adventures of Bugs 
Bunny, Popeye, and Porky 


Pig from your desktop. 
QuickToons II: What's Up, 
Disc? from Wayzata Techno- 
logy brings a compilation of 
classic cartoons to your PC. It 
contains six digitized car- 
toons, complete with audio, 
for a total of 74 minutes of film. 

Included on the disc are 
Falling Hare, The Case of the 
Missing Hare, Parlez Vous 
Woo, Cooking with Gags, 
Toyland Caper, and Who's 
Who at the Zoo. Pull up your 
ergonomic chair and travel 
back to yesteryear! 

Another product from 
Wayzata Technology, Sound 
Library Pro, is a compilation 
of more than 1200 digitally 
recorded sounds, featuring a 
vast array of media effects. 
Navigate your way through a 
myriad of high-quality digital- 
ly recorded sounds that are 
easy to copy and copyright- 

The disc features six main 
sound categories (animals, 
household, instruments, 
nature, special effects, and 
voice) and over 30 subcate- 
gories with 300 megabytes of 
sound. It can enhance your 
desktop presentations, or you 
can use it to create a more 
enjoyable Windows audio 

A third product from 
Wayzata Technology brings 
you the latest in computer 
animation. Tony Quinn's 
Virtual Worlds is a journey to 
the limits of computer anima- 
tion. It contains full-screen 
animations in 2-bit, 4-bit, 8- 
bit, and 24-bit color versions 
that are designed to push the 
limits of your desktop. 

This CD-ROM has an 
easy-to-use interface which 
connects you to hundreds of 
digitally created color illustra- 
tions and animated se- 
quences. While traveling 
through Virtual Worlds, you 

can view three-dimensional 
images, fly through virtual 
landscapes, visit the robot 
planet, and experience the 
limits in computer animation. 

Wayzata Technology 


$25 each 

Circle Reader Service Number 534 

Although the bookie 
written on a technical U 
that should be easily 
derstandable for those r 
to CD-ROM and multii 
dia, there are also rev> 
ing insights for even 
most technically soph 
cated readers. 

"Too many people thin 

Watch cartoons on your PC with 

Free Advice 

Everything you always want- 
fed to know about buying a 
CD-ROM drive — but were 
afraid to ask — is now 
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called 15 Questions to Ask 
Before Purchasing a CD- 
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the drive use a SCSI or propri- 
etary interface board? What's 
the data transfer rate of the 
drive? Does the drive use a 
tray or caddy mechanism? 

QuickToons II: What's up D< 

a CD-ROM drive as a ger 
item. But with single-spe 
double-speed, triple-spe 
and soon quad-speed dr 
on the market, nothing c< 
be further from the tri 
Throw in the need to cons 
standards such as MP( 
SCSI-2, Photo CD, and 
and you're left with a situa 
where consumers could e 
ly become confused i 
wind up buying the wr 
drive for all the wrong 
sons," says Plextor's \ 
president, Robert Tatar. 

Plextor Marketing 

Circle Reader Service Number 

Paranoid population. 
Psychotic criminals. 
Power hungry corporation's. 
Big Brother governmefi 
Haves and have nots. 

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Available on 

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9 * . ■ 

Circle Renter 



By Denny Atkin 


Like the VCR before it, the 
CD-ROM drive got an initial 
sales boost through the 
availability of a wide variety 
of adult-oriented titles. Also 
like the VCR, most of these 
titles consist of poor-quality, 
inexpensively produced 
material shoveled onto the 
new format. In the case of 
CD-ROM, that generally 
means megabytes of GIF 
pictures copied wholesale 
onto a disc or adult films 
digitized into tiny AVI files. 
Even so-called interactive 
titles have often been little 
more than movie clips that 
let you choose which part of 
the film to view next. 

This isn't all the fault of 
the CD-ROM producers— 
the linear nature of digital 
video and slow CD-ROM 
access limit the amount of 
traditional interactivity. While 
other titles give in to these 
limitations or awkwardly try 
to work around them, 
Penthouse Interactive: 
Virtual Photo Shoot simply 
takes advantage of the 
nature of CD-ROM movies 
and creates a new type of 

You take on the role of a 
photographer for Pent- 
house, the well-known 
men's magazine from COM- 
PUTE'S parent company, 
General Media. Your as- 
signment is to photograph 
three beautiful Penthouse 
models for Penthouse pub- 
lisher Bob Guccione. After 
you've shot and edited your 
photo portfolio, Guccione 
himself appears onscreen 
and rates your photographic 

You first decide which 
Penthouse Pet to photo- 
graph. This first disc 


includes digital video of 
three Pets: amber-haired 
Dominique St. Croix, 
brunette 1993 Pet of the 
Year Julie Strain, and blond 
January 1993 Pet of the 
Month Natalie Lennox. 
Clicking on a Pet's name 
brings up a short video 
introduction. Once you 
select a model, you're ready 
to begin the photo shoot. 

The well-designed inter- 
face sports a quarter-screen 
"video display" window in 
the center, with a VCR-style 

the model goes through her 
poses, you click on the 
camera icon in the center of 
the control panel to take 
your photos. Each photo is 
transferred to a filmstrip for 
later editing. Many of the 
video sequences offer two 
camera angles which you 
can jump between by click- 
ing on the A and B buttons. 

At any point you can 
click on the filmstrip icon to 
view and edit your pho- 
tographs. You can view 
them in sequence as a slide 


' flrn i ftriw h ' '^J^M ' — TfaftfflW 

' -Jteifamm ' ^tenrn^J '.Jhihw ' 

Test your photographic skills with Penthouse Interactive. 

control panel below and a 
series of thumbnail images 
on each side. These thumb- 
nails are used to direct the 
model — you choose actions 
such as Tilt Head, Lick Lips, 
or Head Poses, as well as 
more adult actions such as 
Gyrate, Show Behind, and 
others I probably shouldn't 
go into here. (The poses 
and angles are definitely of 
an adult nature but, like the 
magazine, lean much more 
toward the sensual than the 
anatomical.) There are more 
than 110 video clips — more 
than 90 minutes in all. 

Clicking on a thumbnail 
starts a video sequence. As 

show or pull up thumbnail 
filmstrips to select individual 
photos. Save photos as 
bitmap images, delete them, 
or tweak them by pulling up 
the original video and mov- 
ing through it frame by 
frame until you get exactly 
the pose you're looking for. 

After you view the final 
pose session for a model or 
click on the Quit button, Bob 
Guccione appears in the 
video display window and 
rates your work. If you have 
a good selection of poses, 
you'll get a comment like 
"Hmm. You obviously know 
what makes a good 
Penthouse layout. I'm look- 

ing forward to seeing more 
from you." But if you've only 
taken a few pictures or if 
you concentrated too much 
on a single type of pose, 
you're more likely to hear 
"Nice try, but I wouldn't quit 
your day job if I were you." 

There's even a little 
humor thrown in: If you wait 
too long without doing any- 
thing, a Pet will pop up and 
make a comment such as 
"What do I look like, a 
screen saver?" Or Guccione 
might appear and say, "It's 
a good thing we're not pay- 
ing you by the hour." 

The quality of the video 
clips in Penthouse 
Interactive is equal to the 
best I've seen in an MPC 
title. The QuickTime videos 
look good on 256-color 
SVGA screens and fantastic 
on 15-bit, 32,768-color 
screens. Video playback 
from a double-speed CD- 
ROM is a smooth 15 fps, 
even in HiColor mode 
(although the title will work 
on a single-speed drive, a 
double-speed one is rec- 
ommended). The models 
were filmed against black 
backdrops, so the screen 
doesn't jump when the cam- 
era pans. Each video clip 
has a rocking background 

Of course, the images of 
Dominique settling onto a 
brass bed, Julie lying 
seductively across a chair, 
or the perfectly toned, beau- 
tifully muscular Natalie work- 
ing out on gym equipment 
are likely to distract you 
from such mundane matters 
as frame rates and audio 
quality anyway. 

Penthouse Video 

(800) 466-9435 


Circle Reader Service Number 550 


■>ni"ta . 




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This contact manager renders tattered appointment books 

and piles of collected business cards obsolete, 

making you a more efficient and conscientious businessperson. 

Richard 0. Mann 

ACT! 2.0 FOR 

If your business day includes 
telephone calls, meetings, or 
other people-intensive interac- 
tions, you're a natural pros- 
pect for a contact manager 
program. With a good contact 
manager, you take a quan- 
tum leap in effectiveness as 
you dump your ragged pile of 
old business cards, your 
appointment book, and your 
briefcase full of odd notes on 
napkins and backs of enve- 
lopes. Your memory suddenly 
seems improved, and your 
ability to follow up on commit- 
ments you've made and 
those made to you is limited 
only by your time. All you 
need is a computer and a 
good contact manager. 

Symantec's Act! 2.0 for Win- 
dows could well be the con- 
tact manager of your dreams. 
The newest release in an hon- 
ored family of best-selling 
Act! programs, Act! 2.0 for 
Windows deserves respect. It 
combines a friendly ease of 
use, a common-sense ap- 
proach, and powerful customi- 
zable features into a program 
you'll be itching to use. 

Although you'll probably 
want to customize Actl's data- 
base, it's usable right out of 
the box. For each contact, 
the program displays two full 
screens of data; you toggle be- 
tween them with the F6 key or 
a clickable icon. You get 76 
fields, 11 of which are system 
monitored, such as the date 
of last contact, edit, and 
merge. The standard fields in 
the default database include 
company name, contact 
name, address fields, three 
phone numbers, title, assis- 
tant's name, E-mail address, 
and a variety of other fairly 

standard items, including 15 
user-definable fields. Date, 
time, and descriptions of the 
first of your meetings, sched- 
uled calls, and to-dos for 
each contact also appear. 

So far, Act! sounds like a 
big address book. There are 
three hidden data sets for 
each contact, however, that 
transform it from an address 
book into a serious contact 
manager. First and foremost 
is the note field. Press F9 or 
click on the notepad icon to 
bring up a half-screen win- 
dow already marked with the 
current date, ready to accept 
whatever notes you enter. 
New notes appear at the top 
of the window; saved ones pro- 
ceed down the screen in re- 
verse chronological order. 
The note window is essential- 
ly a linked word-processing 
document that you can 
search, print, or use however 
you want; there are no length 

Second is the related task 
list. For any contact, you can 
enter single-line tasks as 
calls, meetings, or to-do 

items. Assign dates, times, 
and priorities to these tasks; 
Act! alerts you when the ap- 
pointed time arrives. Review 
your open tasks by contact or 
by day, week, or month. This 
replaces your appointment 
book and ties each task to a 
single contact whose informa- 
tion will be immediately at 
hand when the computer re- 
minds you of the task. 

As you mark these tasks 
done (or not done), they go in- 
to the third data set — a histo- 
ry file — along with any direct- 
ly entered calls, meetings, or 
to-dos. A quick click displays 
the history for each contact — 
handy for those many events 
that don't call for a longer 
text entry in the note window. 

Chances are you'll want to 
change some of the fields 
and the screen layout. Chang- 
ing a field name and type 
(text, phone number, numeri- 
cal, date, and so on) is a 
snap, making it simple for you 
to build the exact database 
you need. There's a draw- 
back, though: You aren't real- 
ly changing the database; the 


program retains the original 
field names and merely dis- 
plays your aliases on screens 
and reports. If you want to que- 
ry by field or design a report, 
you must know the original 
name of that field. Thus, if you 
declare field USER-1 to be 
BIRTHDAY, your queries to 
find all birthdays in July will 
have to refer to USER-1. 
You'll probably want to keep 
a chart of field names to 
track this. 

Acti's interface is standard 
Windows, but it lacks many of 
the newer features found in 
the latest high-end programs, 
such as right-button clicks for 
speed menus and displayed 
function descriptions as the 
cursor passes over icons. The 
icon bar across the top of the 
screen has a good selection 
of the most commonly used 
functions and has room for a 
half-dozen custom icons. 

In an era when many main- 
line Windows applications 
balk at anything under 8MB 
of memory, it's refreshing that 
Act! 2.0 is zippy with only 
4MB. Version 2.0 also vastly 
improves the printing capabil- 
ities, adding a suite of day, 
week, and month calendar re- 
ports that challenge those of 
dedicated time managers. 
They print in all the standard 
day-planner book sizes. And 
Act! automatically rolls over un- 
completed tasks each day. 

Act!'s time management fea- 
tures don't rival those of full- 
scale personal information 
managers (PIMs), but the pro- 
gram is quite effective for per- 
sons whose tasks are primari- 
ly time related. It's less effec- 
tive if your day includes prior- 
itizing long lists of tasks that 
you can do in any order. 

Included in Act! is an unin- 
spired but serviceable word 
processor for writing letters, 

faxes, and other documents 
that automatically grab the 
contact data from the data- 
base. Mail-merge operations 
are easy to set up and use. 

If you have the fax software 
WinFax Pro, you don't even 
have to exit Act! to use it. Al- 
so, you can create a template 
form letter for the fax and mail- 
merge a broadcast fax to mul- 
tiple recipients automatically. 

Acti's database is a DBF 
file in standard dBASE IV for- 
mat, making it easy to access 
from other programs. The 
files grow large rather quickly; 
my 285-name database occu- 
pies over 2MB of hard disk 

Although file size compli- 
cates matters slightly, it's fair- 
ly easy to use Act! on a desk- 
top computer and a laptop 
simultaneously. You can ei- 
ther copy the entire database 
between machines (if only 
one set of files has changes) 
or merge the two databases. 
The intelligent merge com- 
pares two databases and 
adds only the new data to the 
existing database. 

Version 1.1 users may won- 
der if 2.0 offers enough new 
features to merit the cost and 
trouble of upgrading. The pri- 
mary improvements lie in net- 
working ability, E-mail en- 
hancements, and reporting. 
Version 2.0 is network ready. 
E-mail enhancements allow 
you to send and receive E- 
mail messages directly from 
Act! through Lotus cc:Mail, Mi- 
crosoft Mail, and Compu- 
Serve (although CompuServe 
users report difficulty in get- 
ting the connection to work 
without tech support's help). 

But there are even more rea- 
sons to upgrade. About half 
the items on my version 1.1 
wish list are in 2.0, along with 
several other small (but wel- 

come) improvements. For in- 
stance, in 1.1 the alphabeti- 
cal lookup Window takes you 
to the nearest contact to a let- 
ter you type — but only one let- 
ter. Version 2.0 tries to match 
whatever you type. 

Unfortunately, the new ver- 
sion brings its own new frustra- 
tions. For example, the auto- 
matically supplied date in the 
note window also adds your 
user name on every note en- 

IBM PC or 
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try, which is fine for a network 
installation but incredibly 
wasteful for a stand-alone ver- 
sion. There's no way to turn 
off the feature. Similar glitch- 
es mar an otherwise admira- 
ble program. 

Act! is simply much more 
than the sum of its parts. As 
soon as you see it, you'll see 
how useful it can be. The pop- 
up note window gives you all 
the flexibility you need to re- 
cord lengthy text information 
or short notes. You'll find the 
program comfortable and re- 
sponsive. Unless your contact 
management needs go be- 
yond the norm, Act! 2.0 for Win- 
dows makes capturing and us- 
ing your contact information 
pleasant — even exciting. O 

Circle Reader Service Number 391 


10281 Torre Ave. 
Cupertino, CA 



Robert Bixby 


Great strides in 

Taxing make 

it indispensable to 

the computer 

user on Sire go. 



Sending a fax may not be the 
first thing that comes to mind 
when you hear the words on- 
line communications, but it 
ought to be. It represents the 
bulk of nonvoice interpersonal 
communication by wire. 

Many people think of faxing 
as a means of rapidly transmit- 
ting text information over the tel- 
ephone. If it were as simple as 
that, faxing would be a lot fast- 
er and more economical. But 
the fact is that faxes are entire- 
ly graphical in nature. Basical- 
ly, a fax machine scans a 
sheet of paper at 100 or 200 
dpi, compresses the mono- 
chrome graphical data, and 
sends it to a remote machine 
where a printer mechanism us- 
es electrical impulses to turn 
dots on treated paper black 
so that that paper represents 
a facsimile of the original — 
facsimile being the root of the 
word fax. 

Canon and Ricoh now have 
inkjet fax machines, and 
some companies (notably 
Okidata with its DOC-IT) now 
have laser fax machines capa- 
ble of transmitting and receiv- 
ing faxes at up to 400 dpi. But 
no matter how clear the fax is, 
it is always graphical. 

Graphics files have several 
drawbacks. They take up a lot 
of space on your hard disk, 
and you can't simply cut and 
paste text out of them for use 
in other documents. A great 
many fax software companies 
have hitched up with OCR com- 
panies to make products that 
read faxes as they come in, 
turning them into ASCII text 
files to save disk space and to 
provide for easy editing. For ex- 
ample, Eclipse Fax with OCR 
is available for a list price of 
$84.95. Eclipse is now a part 
of Phoenix Technologies (846 
University Avenue, Norwood, 
Massachusetts 02062; 617- 

Another problem with fax- 


ing is that it ties you to a loca- 
tion. Generally, fax machines 
are huge, bulky objects that re- 
quire line current to operate 
and a telephone connection to 
communicate. Wouldn't it be 
great to have the ability to fax 
while on the move? Dead time 
spent riding in taxis or waiting 
for planes could be used for is- 
suing communiques to cocon- 
spirators around the globe. 

Laptops now come with ti- 
ny fax modems. A hookup is 
even available for sending fax- 
es over pay telephones (by 
sending audio signals 
through the handset). But why 
should you put up with being 
wired to a grid? That was the 
question that launched a thou- 
sand communicators. 

Remember the recent excite- 
ment about hand-held commu- 
nicators? One by one the ma- 
jor computer and software play- 
ers trotted out their exciting 
new technologies, only to be 
repulsed by a cosmic yawn. 
Who could have guessed that 
people would prefer a key- 
board on the desktop to a pen 
on the palmtop? 

One of the main problems— 
or at least the most broadly 
reported problem — with 
palmtops is that handwriting 
recognition is still in its infan- 
cy. But the most important 
problem is much more basic 
than this. Although the ma- 
chines were initially sold as 
pocket communicators, they 
generally don't communicate 
at all. Some require additional 
purchase of very expensive 
proprietary hardware to allow 
them to communicate, and oth- 
ers are shipped with no more 
than a promise that someday 
they'll be able to communi- 
cate. Only at their own peril do 
companies bet on consumers' 
ability to defer gratification. 

Undeterred by the failures 
of other companies, Motorola 
has introduced an interesting 
product called the Envoy. Mo- 
torola is about the oldest 

name there is in telecommuni- 
cations, and true to its history, 
the company has brought out 
a product built around commu- 
nications rather than having 
communications added on. Us- 
ing the ARDIS wireless commu- 
nications network (available in 
400 U.S. cities), Envoy can 
send and receive E-mail or fax- 
es from any location. If you 
and a companion both own En- 
voys, you can also exchange 
data between them over an in- 
frared communications link. 

RadioMail, one of the AR- 
DlS-connected services avail- 
able to Envoy users, provides 
Internet as well as commercial 
E-mail access. You can also 
make use of the Official Airline 
Guides service. Envoy comes 
with a built-in spreadsheet 
that's 1 -2-3 and Excel compat- 
ible, and it may have a Quick- 
en-related product, though 
that is still under discussion as 
this piece goes to press. 

For more information, con- 
tact Motorola Wireless Data 
Group, 1201 East Wiley Road, 
Suite 103, Schaumburg, Illi- 
nois 60173; (800) 535-5775. 

One area of online commu- 
nications that doesn't get a lot 
of press is fax back or fax on 
demand. If you need to get a 
lot of information out in a hur- 
ry, fax on demand is the way 
to do it. The system works like 
this. You publish a fax-on-de- 
mand number for potential cus- 
tomers to call. When they call 
that number, they are asked 
what information they need 
and what fax number to send 
it to. As soon as the customer 
hangs up, the information is 
faxed. This service would al- 
low a person to distribute rou- 
tine or rapidly changing infor- 
mation without tying up a hu- 
man operator. If you're interest- 
ed in learning more about the 
technology and the tech- 
nique, contact Fax on De- 
mand, 15101 Surveyor Boule- 
vard, Addison, Texas 75244; 
(800) 329-1777. O 

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I would like to order one or more of the following books: 
J The 45-Minute Guide to Buying Your First Computer or 

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□ American Express 

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For Phone Orders Call Toll Free: 

t-S S-03-WO 


Banging drums, designing birds, and 

building with moving blocks, kids develop thinking 

skills as their imaginations run wild. 

Peter Scisco 



It's amazing the things kids 
think about. That's why you 
won't find a more aptly 
named software program for 
kids than Thinkin' Things by 
Edmark. This collection of six 
learning activities offers over 
a half-dozen things for chil- 
dren to think about. Each sec- 
tion of the program exercises 
young minds with ideas rang- 
ing from making music to craft- 
ing comparisons. 

Take the Fripple Shop, for 
example: Orders stream in by 
phone and fax; the inventory 
bounces and hops. Sound 
like a retail nightmare? May- 
be, but it's a heck of a lot of 
fun, especially when you're 
selling fat little purple-spotted 
creatures with straight hair 
and little eyes. 

Each time a customer plac- 
es an order, kids must distin- 
guish among the many differ- 
ent Fripples in stock. But this 
is more than just visual identi- 
fication. Kids also get a basic 
lesson in logic, since Thinkin' 
Things employs the words 
and, not, and or, terms that 
adults familiar with computer- 
ized databases might recog- 
nize from Boolean logic. 
Used during information 
searches, these terms enable 
us to expand or narrow choic- 
es by grouping the informa- 
tion pool in different ways. 

It's the same with kids se- 
lecting Fripples. They soon 
learn the difference between 
a Fripple that has "spots and 
big eyes" from one that has 
"spots and big eyes but not 
curly hair." All of the instruc- 
tions and requests in the Frip- 
ple Shop are spoken; some 
of them are accompanied by 
visual cues. As kids become 
more proficient in their logical 
thinking, the program poses 


more difficult choices. Par- 
ents can also adjust the skill 
level manually from the 
game's Adult section. 

When they get tired of mind- 
ing the store, kids can jump 
into the jam with a funky mon- 
key (ape, actually) or a yam- 
mering bird called Toony 
Loon. The ape's name is Oran- 
ga Banga, and he's a wild- 
haired drumming demon. Dur- 
ing their play, kids create 
auditory patterns by clicking 
the mouse on Oranga's per- 
cussion instruments. They 
can tap the snare drum, 
stomp the bass drum, or play 
a cymbal, chimes, a cowbell, 
or a gong. By selecting the 
create button, children are 
free to develop their own pat- 
terns. After they've finished, 
they select the play button, 
and Oranga Banga beats out 
the rhythm they've built. 

The Question & Answer ac- 
tivity flips the action by asking 
kids to repeat a pattern after 
Oranga plays it. As kids get 
better at remembering and re- 
peating the pattern, which re- 
quires them to distinguish 

among the different sounds 
that the instruments make, 
the patterns get longer and 
more sophisticated. The ulti- 
mate challenge comes when 
kids turn off the lights and lis- 
ten to Oranga play in the 
dark. With only the sound of 
the instruments (and Oran- 
ga's eyes) as a guide, kids 
must remember the pattern 
and play it back (the lights 
come back on at this point). 

Playing with Toony Loon is 
similar, but pitch is added as 
part of the musical pattern. 
This crazy bird plays a xylo- 
phone, but kids can choose 
what the keys are made of: 
standard metal bars, glasses, 
rubber bands, or hollow wood- 
en cylinders. Each material 
makes a different sound, but 
all are arranged in a scale. 
With a little practice, kids can 
create their own tunes. Like 
Oranga Banga, old Toony 
Loon will play a sequence of 
notes and ask the player to re- 
peat them. Alternatively, kids 
can make up their own se- 
quence of sounds and ask 
their funny feathered friend to 

play it back to them. 

Speaking of feathered 
friends, that's the name of a 
fourth Thinkin' Things activity. 
During this game, kids run a 
baby bird factory. Feathered 
Friends is in some ways an ex- 
tension of the Fripple Shop. 
While playing in the create 
mode, kids can build any 
kind of baby bird they want 
by selecting a body color and 
pattern, a hat, and a shoe. If 
they like, they can match the 
bird that appears on the fac- 
tory floor, or they can create a 
totally different bird. 

The Question & Answer ac- 
tivity poses a more difficult 
problem. While playing this 
part of the game, kids must 
identify a pattern and then cre- 
ate the bird that fits it. For ex- 
ample, the conveyor belt may 
contain baby birds: a blue 
one, followed by a green one, 
followed by a blue one. When 
asked to create a bird that 
fits the pattern, kids must 
build a green baby bird. All of 
the bird building and design 
takes place by selecting but- 
tons, which activate different 
parts of the factory and final- 
ly deliver the baby bird from 
an egg laid by a robot chick- 
en. I'll bet Colonel Sanders 
never did it this way. 

To finish the day, kids can 
create animated scenes with 
the program's two design mod- 
ules. They're easy to use (just 
drag shapes onto the draw- 
ing board and then set them 
in motion with the press of a 
button). Designs can be built 
as spheres or as two-dimen- 
sional shapes. 

Flying Spheres is designed 
to enhance perception skills, 
particularly when it comes to 
spatial relations. Parents real- 
ly have to see this part of the 
game in action to appreciate 
its fantastic images. Children 

explore the illusion of depth 
as spheres grow larger and 
smaller on the screen, pass- 
ing over backgrounds of differ- 
ent colors. 

Starting a moving sphere 
sculpture is as simple as drag- 
ging a sphere to the back- 
ground screen and then set- 
ting it in motion with the 
mouse. Musical accompani- 
ment encourages children to 
develop creative skills as 
they build kinetic displays 
which reflect the mood of the 
background music. They also 
get to experiment with motion 
and speed as they set 
spheres flying in all direc- 
tions. An added plus: The 
background screen can be en- 
larged to cover the entire 
screen, allowing kids to exhib- 
it their creations without the de- 
sign toolbox interfering with 
the visual display. 

Flying Shapes is similar, so 
kids will be able to move 
back and forth between it 
and the Flying Spheres activi- 
ty without having to learn 
more about working the pro- 
gram. This activity sounds sim- 
ple — the child drags a shape 
onto the design board and 
then sets it into motion — but 
these simple tools allow for 
very sophisticated and imagi- 
native games. 

For example: Using certain 
shapes, kids can create a 
rocket ship that moves from 
the bottom to the top of the 
screen. They might create a 
car, complete with spinning 
wheels, that moves across 
the screen. As a shape reach- 
es the edge of the screen, it 
bounces back in the opposite 
direction. Kids will soon be 
laughing at their "cartoons," 
as their cars collide into the 
side of the screen and return 
a jumbled mix of shapes. 

Kids can change the size 

of each shape. Unlike Flying 
Spheres, the Flying Shapes 
game doesn't have musical ac- 
companiment. Instead, each 
shape has its own sound. On 
computers equipped with an 
audio card that has recording 
capability and a microphone, 
kids can record their own voic- 
es or sound effects for each 

Overall, Thinkin' Things 
boasts a fine, intuitive design 

IBM PC or 

compatible, 640K 
ram, VGA, nam 
disk, mouse; 
Sound Blaster or 
compatible sound 
card strongly 

that encourages play and 
learning. Parents have a lot of 
control over setting skill levels 
in the four Question & Answer 
games (Oranga Banga, 
Toony Loon, Feathered 
Friends, and Fripple Shop). 
Likewise, parents can set over- 
all system rules so that kids 
can't exit the program to get in- 
to the family hard disk (and 
accidentally erase important 
household files). 

For kids from four to eight 
years old, this exploration of 
shapes and sounds will pro- 
vide many hours of delight. 
Parents will also find it difficult 
to resist, turning time at the 
family computer into shared ex- 
perience, where learning and 
fun take center stage. □ 

Circle Reader Service Number 392 

P.O. BOX 3218 
Redmond, WA 
(800) 426-0856 



Peter Olafson 


Wolfenstein 3-D was a defin- 
ing moment in the history of Ap- 
ogee Software, and now Shad- 
ow Warrior 3-D may be anoth- 
er. It's the first in a series of 
about a half-dozen free-scroll- 
ing action games expected to 
be produced under the pre- 
mier shareware label's new 
3-D engine, which Apogee ex- 
ecs feel is superior to that 
used in Id's Doom. 

Among its features are the 
ability to look up and down, to 
jump 'and duck, and to crawl 
through narrow passages. 

Apogee says 

Shadow Warrior 

3-D can do 

everything Doom 

can— and a 
whole lot more. 

Whole rooms can move and 
transform. Light can be at any 
of 64 diminishing levels (four 
times the number in Doom) 
and can strobe, flicker, fade, 
and spill out of rooms into hall- 
ways. Doors can slide open in 
any direction, swing open, 
swing back and forth, or re- 
volve. Any surface can be an- 
imated, and the player can be 
at any elevation on the map. In 
Shadow Warrior 3-D, enemies 
jump over you and drop down 
from ceilings; some are smart 
enough to peer around cor- 
ners, fire at you, and duck 
back to safety. 

"In short, we can currently 
do every single thing Doom 
does plus some additional 
things," says Apogee cofoun- 
der George Broussard. "And 
we're not finished yet. Every 
week, we seem to add some 
cool new feature that pushes 
the engine farther and farther 
away from Doom." 

Shadow Warrior 3-D is slat- 
ed for Christmas release, in 
close company with the Indi- 
ana Jones-like Ruins 3-D (work- 


ing title). And a third game, 
Duke Nukem 3-D, slated for 
the first quarter of 1995, 
sounds like the most sophisti- 
cated yet. 

As the hero of two prior Ap- 
ogee platformers, you'll climb 
ladders, use a jet pack to fly 
around L.A. (which has been 
turned into a maximum-secu- 
rity prison a la Escape from 
New York), pilot futuristic ve- 
hicles, shoot down aircraft, 
and use security cameras to 
spy on parts of other levels. 

Look for some games initial- 
ly planned for development un- 
der the Wolfenstein engine to 
make the transition to the new 
one. And Apogee's develop- 
ers are already working on a 
next-generation engine that 
will afford players even great- 
er freedom of movement. 

Of course, before Wolfen- 
stein, the Texas-based label 
was known for platform and ar- 
cade games, and that strain 
hasn't given out. The last re- 
lease was the dazzling vertical- 
scroll shoot-'em-up, Raptor — 
a high-gloss incarnation of 
Major Stryker. 

And by the time you read 
this, Hocus Pocus, Wacky 
Wheels, and Mystic Towers 
should all be available. Hocus 
Pocus is a 32-level, 256-color 
arcade adventure with eleva- 
tors, switches, warp spells 
(you play a young wizard), 
and even a princess to save. 
Wacky Wheels is a racing 
game said to be in the style of 
Super Mario Carts, with a split- 
screen view and modem play. 
And Mystic Towers, an adven- 
ture game using a tilted point 
of view, emphasizes puzzle 
solving along with critter blast- 
ing as you progress through 
six castles. 

Violent Vengeance — a beat- 
'em-up in the Streetfighter 2- 
Mortal Kombat mold— is slat- 
ed for third-quarter release. It 
has 12 characters, each with 
its own moves, and you can 
play against the computer, 

with a friend, or in a story 
mode that pits you against mul- 
tiple opponents at the same 

Later in the year, we can ex- 
pect the return of Alabama 
Smith in a long-awaited plat- 
form game appearing under 
the new title Realms of Chaos, 
as well as Tom, Dick, and Har- 
ry — an arcader with up to 13 
levels of parallax scrolling (a 
feat previously performed on- 
ly on the Amiga and dedicat- 
ed game consoles). 

And oh, yes — look for two fi- 
nal games using variations on 
the Wolfenstein game engine. 
Blake Stone: Firestorm (a retail- 
only product due in the fourth 
quarter) is to the original 
Blake Stone what Spear of Des- 
tiny is to Wolfenstein, with new 
graphics, 20 new levels, and 
new features like a zoomable 
map, full lighting effects, and 
textured floors and ceilings. 

Rise and Tide (working ti- 
tle), also aimed at the retail mar- 
ket, is being assembled under 
a rewritten version of the Wolfen- 
stein engine, and the specs sug- 
gest it's logged some time in 
the fridge beside Doom and Ap- 
ogee's would-be Doom-buster. 

Look for diminished lighting, 
fog effects, the ability to look 
up and down, and "maskable" 
walls (semitransparent, like 
those used for jail cells). It will 
also feature a military theme 
and digitized characters. "In 
fact," says Steve Blackburn, 
Apogee's vice president of 
operations, "you'll see some 
recognizable actors [Apogee 
staffers] in there and [politi- 
cally correct worrywarts won't 
like this part] have a chance to 
kill them." n 






All in one little box. 


d Omark 

For order information call 800-695-GAME today. 

Circle Reader Service Number 251 


The chomping, slurping, burping members 

of the Horde in this hot new CD-ROM game are among 

the most entertaining and formidable foes around. 

Scott A. May 


Recent years have shown us 
how devastating floods, earth- 
quakes, blizzards, and torna- 
does can be. Yet even Moth- 
er Nature's fury is calm com- 
pared to the voracious and to- 
tally disgusting appetite of the 
Horde. Doubters should take 
a cautious step into the muck- 
lined boots of Sir Chauncey, 
the beleaguered hero of Crys- 
tal Dynamics' outstanding for- 
ay into PC entertainment, The 

As with so many other 
twists of fate, the protagonist 
just happens to be in the 
right place at the right time. 
An orphan raised by a herd 
of kind cows, Chauncey be- 
comes a lowly servant in the 
court of Winthrop the Good. 
One day, during a royal ban- 
quet, High Chancellor Kronus 
Maelor amuses the guests 
with his usual egocentric 
boasting. Suddenly, between 
belly laughs, the king begins 
choking. Only Chauncey has 
the clear mind to rush to the 
king's aid, dislodging a lump 
of turkey from his majesty's 
windpipe. The king declares 
Chauncey a hero, knights 
him, and rewards him with a 
tract of land in the Shimto 
Plains. He also hands over 
his trusty sword, the Grim- 
thwacker, to help Chauncey 
defend his plot of earth from 
the evil, ravenous Horde. 

And you, as Chauncey, will 
need it to overcome the 
Horde, the most vile, hideous, 
and comical race of fantasy 
creatures to emerge since the 
Grues infested Zork. The mem- 
bers of the Horde have no 
qualms about making their 
presence known as they 
stomp, hop, giggle, snort, 
and burp a blue streak. 
When these brainless brutes 

get down to business, they 
eat and destroy everything 
they can lay their nasty little 
claws on. 

Hordlings come in eight re- 
volting types, each indige- 
nous to certain types of ter- 
rain. Blowgun-toting Forest 
Hordlings hide in trees and 
plot their attack. Desert Hord- 
lings burrow like moles, mak- 
ing them extra difficult to de- 
tect. The massive Juggernaut 
Hordlings won't let anything — 
even the strongest fence or 
wall — get between them and 
food. Ice Hordlings, armed 
with snowballs and insatiable 
hunger, are similarly tena- 
cious. Of special concern are 
the Shaman Hordlings, 
whose magic tricks include tel- 
eportation, deadly fireballs, 
and the ability to regenerate 
their dead friends. 

The object is to cultivate 
your barren plot into a thriving 
community. Gameplay un- 
folds in seasonal phases, 
each lasting two minutes in re- 
altime, where you can plant 
trees, cultivate the soil, buy 
cows, and prepare yourself 

for the inevitable attack. 

Members of the Horde 
come in various numbers and 
from all directions, with one 
goal: destruction of every- 
thing you own. Cows, your 
top money makers, are the 
Hordlings' prized food staple. 
Luckily, although the Hord- 
lings are ravenous, they're al- 
so easy to dispose of. Moats 
and spiked pits provide your 
first line of defense, followed 
by walls and fences closer to 
the village. When all else 
fails, whack 'em with your 
mighty Grimthwacker. One 
slice of your sword sends 
most Hordlings exploding like 
overripe tomatoes — complete 
with a sickening, yet satisfy- 
ing, "sploosh," leaving only 
eyeballs swimming in a wet 
pile of red goo. 

As your territory expands, 
your ability to patrol the entire 
village is severely limited. 
Hire knights and archers to 
guard your borders with 
spiked maces and Horde- 
bursting arrows. As your fi- 
nances grow, visit the castle 
shoppe to buy more powerful 


tools and weapons, including 
flamethrowers, bombs, telepor- 
tation rings, healing rocks, 
and spells. You can even buy 
bait to lure Hordlings to their 

You also need to be aware 
of the one creature worse 
than the Horde: the vengeful 
High Chancellor Kronus 
Maelor. He'll do everything in 
his power to make your life mis- 
erable, from raising taxes be- 
yond reasonable limits to de- 
stroying or confiscating your 
property under the guise of a 
fictitious royal decree. As the 
game progresses, you're giv- 
en additional tracts of unreal 
estate, each more inhospita- 
ble to humans yet perfect 
breeding grounds for new 
strains of Hordlings. Life as a 
land baron sure isn't what you 
had imagined. 

Released exclusively on CD- 
ROM, The Horde has multime- 
dia tricks and techniques that 
rank far above average. Rath- 
er than simply augmenting 
gameplay with shallow video 
segues, the full-motion sequenc- 
es are tastefully short, seamless- 
ly integrated, and crucial to the 
story line. Unlike many lesser ef- 
forts in this burgeoning medi- 
um, The Horde boasts unusu- 
ally high production values 
and professional acting. 

The Hollywood connection 
includes Kirk Cameron as 
Chauncey and Michael Grego- 
ry as the delightfully malicious 
Maelor. Michael McCarthy is 
jolly good as the kindhearted, 
but hopelessly dense, King 
Winthrop. But it's Henry Crow- 
ell Jr. who repeatedly steals 
the show as Herald, the wise- 
cracking FNN newscaster. 
His hilarious reports help 
ease the sting of the Hord- 
lings' bite or Maelor's dastard- 
ly deeds. Crowell also serves 
as narrator and makes a brief 

appearance as one of 
Maelor's torture victims. 

Over 35 minutes of live-ac- 
tion video fill the disc, ren- 
dered in one of three user-se- 
lected modes: high definition 
(small window), low resolution 
(full screen), and a unique "ex- 
ploded" view that combines 
the advantages of each. 

Game graphics are excep- 
tionally colorful and eloquent- 
ly detailed, featuring stunning 
3-D texture-mapped anima- 
tion of all major characters. Vil- 
lagers' movements are incred- 
ibly fluid, and the tiny cows 
bob their heads and graze 
with amazing realism. The big- 
gest kick, of course, is the 
wild, unpredictable antics of 
the various Hordlings. Espe- 
cially impressive are the hulk- 
ing Juggernauts, whose brain- 
less advances exhibit some 
of the game's most sophisticat- 
ed animation. 

Sound also plays an impor- 
tant role. Interestingly, there's 
no setup routine — the pro- 
gram is apparently smart 
enough to automatically de- 
tect and utilize your hardware 
configuration. Beyond the ob- 
vious inclusion of digitized 
speech, the game features a 
large number of sample 
sound effects. Players with 16- 
bit sound cards will thrill — 
and cringe — at the call of the 
Hordlings, rendered in bone- 
chilling stereo. Sound effects 
also alert you to Hordling at- 
tacks. Juggernauts pause be- 
tween noisy bites to exclaim, 
"Oh! Yum-yum!" They're so 
cute, in a revolting sort of 
way, that you almost hate to 
run them through. 

Game speed is acceptable 
on a 33-MHz 80386 machine, 
although the controls exhibit a 
slight response lag. When the 
game is run from a single- 
speed CD-ROM drive, video 

quality suffers. Given the full 
power of today's latest multi- 
media machines — 80486, 
8MB RAM, and double-speed 
CD-ROM drive — performance 
is exceptionally smooth. Al- 
though the manual warns of po- 
tential problems with com- 
pressed drives and third-party 
memory managers, the pro- 
gram seems well behaved 
even under such configura- 
tions. Mouse control is accept- 

IBM PC or 
compatible (33- 
MHz 80386 or 
faster, 8048G 
4MB RAM, 256- 
drive (double- 

able, but a joystick is pre- 
ferred. A stick that emulates 
digital input, such as the Gra- 
vis PC GamePad, works best. 
Clearly, The Horde's great- 
est attribute is its careful bal- 
ance of streamlined— if not 
comfortably repetitive — game- 
play and an enticing, gradual- 
ly increasing challenge. Like 
most classic designs, it 
proves instantly accessible, 
yet enjoyably difficult to mas- 
ter. Likewise, it appeals equal- 
ly to arcade and strategy play- 
ers. Toss in generous 
amounts of outrageous hu- 
mor, sprinkled with some of 
the best video sequences in 
recent memory, and you've 
got the makings of a truly orig- 
inal multimedia hit. D 

hard drive, joystick 
or mouse; supports 
entire Sound 
Blaster family, 
Gravis Ultrasound, 
Microsoft Sound 
Board, C0V0X 
SoundMaster, and 
compatible sound 
cards— $59.99 



87 Enclno Ave. 

Palo Alto, CA 


[415) 473-3434 

Circle Reader Service Number 393 



Denny Atkin 


Make your 

fortune in tiie ait 

world with 

Eidolon's Millennium 


Lords of the Realm is the lat- 
est entry in the "medieval war- 
lord tries to conquer England" 
genre, which includes such 
classics as Defender of the 
Crown and Castles II. You 
start as mayor of a county; of 
course, you're not satisfied 
with one territory — you want to 
be king of the land. You'll 
raise armies and move across 
the land, attempting to steal 
territory from the Knight, Baron, 
Earl, and Countess, and up to 
three other human players. 

This isn't just a war game. 
Along with managing your ar- 
mies, you also build your terri- 
tories' economies and keep 
the people fed. You decide 
whether to plant grain or hops 
on a patch of land or use it to 

HJBBBSli Brfl 


I mmLLJ 





raise cattle or sheep. You'll 
have to allocate some workers 
to mining, some to collecting 
stone or timber to build cas- 
tles, and others toward weap- 
ons development. Economic 
and social decisions abound: 
Do you use the newly harvest- 
ed grain to feed your people, 
or do you trade it for goods 
and risk a peasant revolt? 

Once you have your econ- 
omy established, you'll start 
building castles, making it 


much more difficult for others 
to conquer your territories. A 
number of predesigned cas- 
tles are included, but the fun 
comes in designing your own. 

Of course, along with man- 
aging your own territories, you 
must send your armies on the 
road to annex even more 
land. Neutral territories can be 
conquered without a fight; if 
another player owns the terri- 
tory, you'll have to battle the lo- 
cal army or peasants. Combat 
can be handled automatically, 
or you can control the battles 
in realtime. Your strategy will 
depend on whether your army 
is equipped with hand-held 
weapons such as swords or ax- 
es or with projectile weapons 
such as crossbows. Don't 
count on winning just because 
your army is bigger. If it's hun- 
gry or unhealthy (finally, a me- 
dieval game that factors in dis- 
ease!), morale will be down, 
and your forces won't fight 
well. If there's a castle in the 
territory, you'll have to lay 
siege to it first, filling in moats 
and using catapults, ladders, 
and other tools to try to gain en- 
try to vanquish enemy forces. 

Merit promises to add mo- 
dem support in the release ver- 
sion. A hybrid of the best as- 
pects of war games and Civili- 
zation, Lords of the Realm is 
definitely worth a look. 

Eidolon's bid. A complete 
change of pace from typical 
PC game fare, Eidolon's Millen- 
nium Auction aims to attract 
an adult audience as the first 
"artistech" game. This CD- 
ROM game of strategy and de- 
ception should appeal to folks 
who enjoy the bluffing aspect 
of poker as well as those 
who've always wanted to at- 
tend high-society art auctions. 

The game lets you choose 
one of seven characters, rang- 
ing from a sardonic German 
art critic to a Japanese cy- 
berpunk entrepreneur. (Kudos 
to Eidolon for offering male 
and female characters of vari- 

ous cultural backgrounds.) 
The characters are animated 
3-D ray-traced figures that re- 
semble a weird combination 
of Disney animatronics and 
the puppets from the old Thun- 
derbirdsjy series. 

You'll start by examining the 
portfolios of your fellow bid- 
ders, trying to get a handle on 
their backgrounds and goals. 
Then you'll spend some time 
exploring the gallery and look- 
ing at the items up for sale. De- 
spite the odd-looking charac- 
ters, the graphics in Millenni- 
um Auction are among the fin- 
est ever to grace a computer 
screen. You won't believe 
there are only 256 colors — the 
portfolio and gallery scenes 
are true-color quality. 

Then it's off to the bidding 
room to battle for art works. If 
you've paid close attention to 
news reports and other informa- 
tion, you'll know which objets 
d'art will fetch the highest re- 
sale values, and you'll be able 
to spend your money wisely. 
Some of the objects you'll bid 
on are classic pieces of art. But 
this game's set in the future, so 
other objects are humorous 
guesses as to what may ap- 
peal to future collectors. These 
include a plaster cast of Amy 
Fisher as well as a mainframe 
computer made by an old com- 
pany called IBM (the portfolio 
notes that a tiny remnant of the 
company still exists, producing 
mailing labels for Microsoft). 
The winner is the bidder who's 
amassed the most personal 
worth at the end of the auction. 

Played solo against comput- 
er opponents, Millennium Auc- 
tion loses its appeal once 
you've figured out the best bid- 
ding strategies and seen all the 
items up for sale. But the game 
supports up to four human play- 
ers, and that's where it shines. 
Get a couple of friends to play, 
and you'll find Millennium Auc- 
tion encourages the same kind 
of fun social interaction as Pic- 
tionary or Scruples. 

rn^/ivi inc v^caivw \^r mc nvvsMtis- vviiMmiHV7 VK^LrciVJ/cr/v *j~i/ 


DOOM is a lightning -fast virtual reality adventure where f** -- 

you're the toughest space trooper ever to suck vacuum. V 

Scientists stationed on a far-off moonbase have opened \ 
a gateway to Hell, releasing a monster-infested holocaust I 
upon the universe. You're the last marine remaining on 1 

the base after the invasion. Your mission is to survive! I 

Four-player combat over network 1 

Two-player action over modem k 

• Incredibly detailed 3-D world I 

• Blood-curdling stereo sound effects I 

• Hair raising demonic denizens of Hell 
Awesome foe-fraggrn' weapons 

"The graphics are superb, with 
lighting effects and art that could 
only come from dark and 
demented minds. 1 
Computer Gaming World 

"You want action? You want 
gunplay? You want gore? 

.DOOM has it all" 
PC Entertainment 

".. .if you have saliva, prepare to 
drool now."".. .an absolute must- 
have for PC action fans." 
Electronic Games 

Call 1 -800-IDG- 


Order the entire DOOM trilogy for $40.00 
or get episode one, Knee-Deep in the 
Dead™ for the cost of shipping and 
handling. Or download episode one 
from Software Creations™ BBS. 
(508) 368-4137 @ 24CHM4.4K baud 
Canadian customers call 1-800-661-7383. 

Requires a 386DX PC compatible or better; hard disk drive; VGA graphics; 4 Megabytes of memory. A 486 is 

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sound effects require a 100% Sound Blaster™ compatible card, Gravis Ultra Sound™, or Pro Audio Spectrum™- 16. 

DOOM is a trademark of id Software, ©1993, Other trademarks are the property of their respective companies. 

Circle Reader Service Number 1B4 

Screaming out of a clear blue sky in your Sop- 
with Camel, machine guns blazing, wind whip- 
ping your scarf into a frantic dance, you pep- 
per the enemy's fuselage with hot lead. He's hit! 
His plane bursts into flames and spirals toward 
the ground, a wake of thick black smoke trail- 
ing behind. Victory is yours. 

Ho hum. Another preprogrammed, 
computer-controlled, artificially intelligent 
Red Baron bites the dust. As any self- 
respecting Klingon might say, 
"Winning a battle against a computer 
has no honor " True glory comes 
from the conquest of a living oppo- 
nent, even one you've never met. 
Plus, it's a lot more fun. 

So it's time to fire up the 
modem and get online. With the 
proper software and a few dol- 
lars to spare, you can dogfight 
with Chuck from Seattle in the 
skies over Europe, shoot 18 
holes of golf with Bob from Ann 
Arbor, or double-down at the 
blackjack tables with Sara from 
Baton Rouge. Live competition 
awaits you in some very excit- 
ing places. 

Just raise your modem's sails 
and dial the nearest online port. 
America Online, CompuServe, 
GEnie, the ImagiNation Network, 
Prodigy — all the major services 
feature online gaming in one form 
or another. In most cases, they pro- 
vide everything you need: the neces- 
sary game software, the modem link, 
and the means to meet opponents. 
While it's true that many commercial 
and shareware games have play-by- 
modem features built in, to play, you must 
first buy the game, find someone else who 
owns a copy, and pay the phone bill charges 
for connecting to his or her computer— which 
can be a very expensive endeavor if your part- 
ner isn't local. 

Ctearfy, gaming a la the online services is the 
way to go. Here's a look at some fun spots along the 
entertainment superhighway. 

America Online 

The country's fastest-growing online service also includes 
one of the smallest selections of online games. That may 
change as AOL gets a grip on its recent population explo- 
sion and focuses on expanding service offerings. In the 
meantime, role-playing gamers, avocational stock bro- 




kers, casino gamblers, and trivia buffs can find a hand- 
ful of enjoyable diversions. 

AOL's main attraction is Neverwinter Nights, an 
Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game that's an 
offshoot of Strategic Simulations 1 Forgotten 
Realms series. As such, it looks a lot like the 
older Wizardry and Bard's Tale games — with 
EGA graphics and PC-speaker sound 
effects to boot. Despite these shortcom- 
ings, NWN attracts a large following. 
Role-playing games are quite popular, 
and NWN delivers realtime, interac- 
tive, multiuser play. 

Except for standard connect 
charges, the game is free. It oper- 
ates while you're connected to 
AOL and requires front-end soft- 
ware—also free— which you 
download from the service to 
your PC, When activated, the 
software drops you to DOS (if 
you're running AOL from 
Windows) and loads the game. 
From there it pfays like a stan- 
dard AD & D role-playing 
adventure, complete with mon- 
sters, hit points, treasure, and 
the like. The difference, of 
course, is that during an expedi- 
tion you might bump into Fred, a 
magic user from Cleveland, or 
Joann, a dwarf fighter from 
Tulsa— real people sharing space 
in the virtual dungeon. The level of 
interaction is up to you: Fight them; 
join them, ignore them, Ask them 
directions to the blacksmith's. 
By incorporating other humans into 
the familiar solitude of role-playing 
games, Neverwinter Nights makes for a 
good time. If you're willing to overlook the 
mediocre graphics and sound, it's well 
worth playing. 
The same holds true for AOL's other fare. 
RabbitJack's Casino, which also requires you 
to download front-end DOS software, seats you 
and other gamblers at Vegas-style bingo, poker, 
and blackjack tables. Like NWN. RabbitJack's sound 
and graphics are nothing special; it's the human inter- 
action that adds the flavor. Playing blackjack alongside 
Joe from Phoenix is surprisingly fun compared to playing 
blackjack against your own computer. 

AOL's in-service offerings — which require no down- 
loading—include Bulls and Bears, a single-player stock- 
market game based on the performance of actual stocks 
(fortunately, you play this market with virtual money), and 

realtime trivia games accessible 
through AOL's People Connection. 


Although one of the most expensive 
online services, CompuServe offers 
an amazing array of game options- 
including an entire forum devoted to 
modem play. But what really puts this 
service on the gaming map is that 
users around the world can play com- 
mercial and shareware modem 
games using CompuServe as the 
link— which is no small trick. 

Say you want to play Falcon 3.0 with 
someone who lives on the other side of 
the country. You could go bankrupt 
from the long-distance bills before you 
get your landing gear up! Compu- 
Serve, however, charges just $6 per 
hour for connect time in its Modem-to- 
Modem Game Lobby — not bad for 
realtime play against another person. 
What's more, you can play the games 
you want, not just what the service 
offers. (Of course, you and your oppo- 
nent must already own the software.) 

There are a couple of drawbacks: 
Access to the Game Lobby is limited 
to 2400 bps, thereby excluding 
games that require 9600 or above 
(like the already classic Doom). 
Moreover, the MTM Challenge 
Board — a database of user profiles 
you can use to search for game-spe- 
cific opponents — is badly out of date. 
(Is anyone still playing Vette or 
Command HQ?) So, while you can 
play almost any modem-supporting 
game in the Lobby, the Challenge 
Board provides little help finding part- 
ners for newer games. 

CompuServe does have a handful 
of respectable in-service games. As 
with America Online, CompuServe 
requires you to download front-end 
software (and charges a few bucks for 
the privilege). Titles include Star- 
Sprint, a space combat game, and 
there are also checkers, backgam- 
mon, and chess. 


GEnie (General Electric Network for 
Information Exchange) is poised to 
become the next big thing in online 
services. In fact, where games are 
concerned, only the ImagiNation 
Network rivals it. GEnie offers more 
than a dozen multiuser games, many 
of which utilize digital sound and gor- 
geous high-resolution graphics. 
Gameplay is free as part of GEnie's 


CompuServe links modem game players prodigy subscribers can enter a portal to 

around the world tne i mag jNation Network. 


Familiar Sierra On-Line characters dot the 
ImagiNation Network. 

standard service plan; as with other 
services, you're required to download 
front-end software for some of the 

The most exciting of GEnie's offer- 
ings, and probably the best multiplay- 
er game to date on any online service, 
is CyberStrike — a virtual-reality com- 
bat game that casts you as pilot of a 
heavily armored two-legged tank, or 
CyberPod. As part of a color-desig- 
nated team of CyberPods, you try to 
wrest control of the CyberCity from 
other teams out to do the same. 

Action packed and easy to play, 
CyberStrike eschews complicated 
rules and controls. The premise is 
simple: Your CyberPod's main need is 
power, which comes from relay towers 
that correspond with your team's 
color. The farther you go from your 
towers, the weaker your pod gets. 
Fortunately, you can request addition- 
al towers and build a network of them 
around the city. Of course, the other 
teams will be building their own net- 
works and, at the same time, fire- 
bombing yours. 

The game never really begins or 
ends; you simply become a part of 
ongoing events when you join in. Your 
view is from inside your pod's cockpit, 
and one of the silly joys of CyberStrike 
is when you stand toe to toe with 
another pod. You can't help but think, 
"There's a human in there." It's multi- 
player virtual reality at its best. 

Other notable multiplayer games 


AOL's Neverwinter Nights is an Advanced 
Dungeons & Dragons adventure. 

Action-packed CyberStrike is a favorite 
among GEnie subscribers. 

on GEnie include Air Warrior — a Super 
VGA air combat simulator — and 
MechWarrior, which is based on the 
popular commercial game of the 
same name. 

ImagiNation Network 

Online gaming is the ImagiNation 
Network's bailiwick. Formerly the 
Sierra Network, INN has the distinc- 
tion of being the most entertainment- 
oriented service in the roundup. As 
such, its stunning graphical interface 
looks like something out of King's 
Quest V — and it's remarkably easy to 
use. The main screen depicts a town 
map; just point and click with the 
mouse to visit CasinoLand, Sierra- 
Land, MedievaLand, or the Club- 
House, among other places. Each 
area includes appropriate types of 
games, most of which are played 
against or alongside other users. 
For each area you visit, you must 


y iM«juH m*ij> 


jrld as we know 
is about to be destroyed 
by zombie dinosaurs from 
historic times! Zapped by Brain 
Bfobs from the planet Zeltoid, 
innocent dinosaurs are being 
time -warped from the past as part 
'* Harry the Harrier's very uncool 
plot to control the world. Only 
iu and Dexter the awesome 
^id can stop him and 
save the earth ! 




' •■ ■ :.,- ■.',■,.:■.■ 

brvlce Number 150 

What You Need 
to Get Online 

Ready for the good news? Your cur- 
rent computer equipment will prob- 
ably serve you just fine for getting 
online. You won't need to replace 
this or upgrade that; all the online 
services reviewed here work flaw- 
lessly with a minimum of hardware. 

You will, of course, need a 
modem— and, ideally, a 386 or bet- 
ter processor, at least a couple of 
megabytes of RAM and hard disk 
space, and a VGA monitor. All five 
of the major services can be 
accessed with minimalist DOS soft- 
ware, although four of them, INN 
being the exception, also have 
Windows interfaces available. 

As for the modem itself, choose 
one capable of 2400 bits per second 
(bps) or better— preferably a 9600 or 
14 T 400 model. None of the sen/ices 
currently support access speeds 
greater than 9600, but they will in the 
future. If you're shopping, a modem 
capable of 14 h 400 bps is the smart 
buy. Prices have plummeted in 
recent months, and many of the 
models include faxing capabilities. 

first create an onscreen representa- 
tion of yourself using INN's clever 
face-builder utility. It's a surprisingly 
fun one-time activity, and seeing car- 
toonish caricatures of your opponents 
certainly adds to INN's intimacy com- 
pared with other online services. 

The most exciting action here is 
found in SierraLand, which contains a 
terrific collection of multi- and dual- 
player games. The most prominent— 
and popular— of these is Red Baron, a 
graphical marvel that's also an exact 
replica of the best-selling Dynamix 
game. Red Baron lets you challenge 
others in one-on-one dogfights or join 
a squadron for multiplayer combat. If 
you thought the computer-controlled 
pilots were too easy, here's your 
chance to fly against the real thing. 

SierraLand also features the 
impressive 3-D Golf, one of surprising- 
ly few online sports games, and the 
classic board game Stratego. Budding 
artists and hooligans will enjoy Graffiti, 
a very clever drawing program that 
lets you join together in painting 
(defacing?) the same canvas. Trivia 
buffs should check out NTN Trivia, a 


nationwide nightly trivia contest. 

For role-playing gamers, the place 
to go is MedievaLand, home to two 
commercial-quality RPGs: The 
Shadow of Yserbius and its sequel, 
Fates of Twinion. If you enjoy commer- 
cial titles like Betrayal at Krondor and 
Eye of the Beholder, you owe it to 
yourself to try MedievaLand's fare. 

CasinoLand is an adults-only den 
of blackjack, roulette, poker, and 
slots. Chat content is virtually unre- 
stricted in CasinoLand, and things 
can get wonderfully raunchy in Lefty's 
Bar— an online hangout that's also 
home to games like Liar's Poker and 
Truth or Dare. 

And finally, the ClubHouse features 
classic card games like bridge, crib- 
bage, checkers, and chess, as well as 
board games like Go and backgam- 
mon. Like all of INN's games, these are 
graphically superb and easy to play. 


Though Prodigy boasts the largest 
membership of all the online services, 
it includes no head-to-head multiplayer 
games. What Prodigy does have is a 
portal to INN: For $3.60 an hour, you 
can play most INN games— including 
Red Baron and Shadow of Yserbius, 
the two most popular. If you're already 
a Prodigy subscriber, this will definitely 
work to your advantage. Instead of 
paying for a second online service, you 
simply pay an extra hourly rate on your 
existing service. Better still, because 
Prodigy has such a large base of local- 
access numbers, chances are good 
that you'll avoid toll charges. (INN has 
a comparatively limited selection of 
numbers; you could wind up paying toll 
charges on top of service charges.) 

Prodigy also has a large selection 
of respectable one-player games. 
GUTS, which Prodigy claims has the 
most players of any online game in the 
country, gives you seven minutes to 
answer seven trivia questions once a 
week for seven weeks. Winners get a 
free sweatshirt and have their names 
posted online. There's also an online 
version of the best-selling Where in the 
World Is Carmen Sandiego? series, 
featuring a new mystery each week. 

Prodigy features a popular pay- 
per-season fantasy baseball game 
called Baseball Manager as well as a 
pay-per-game empire-building adven- 
ture called Rebel Space. Both are 
played against other Prodigy mem- 
bers, but not in realtime. 

Playing at a Computer Near You 

If the prospect of tackling nationwide 
competition seems a bit overwhelm- 
ing, you might want to start locally on 
one of the thousands of privately run, 
local bulletin board systems (BBSs) 
available across the country, most of 
which offer at least a few online 
games. Granted, they'll probably have 
limited graphics (if any), no sound, 
and one-turn-per-day access, but that 
doesn't mean they can't be fun. Two 
of the most popular BBS games are 
Global Wars, which is like Risk, and 
Trade Wars. Ask a local computer 
guru to help you find some BBS 
phone numbers; then check them out. 
BBSs are a good place to start if you 
want to get your online gaming feet 
wet, and best of all, they're free. 

Entertainment to Go 

All things considered, gamers looking 
for new challenges (and opponents) 
really can't go wrong with any of the 
online services listed here. Each has 
merits and drawbacks, and each offers 
competitive access charges. One thing 
is certain: The human element in com- 
puter gaming is vastly underrated — so 
get yourself online and find out why. Rick 
from Northville is waiting for you! □ 

Online Services 

America Online 
8619 Westwood Center Dr. 
Vienna, VA 22182-2285 
(703) 448-8700 


P.O. Box 20212 

5000 Arlington Centre Blvd. 

Columbus, OH 43220 



P.O. Box 6403 

Rockville, MD 20849-6403 


The ImagiNation Network 

P.O. Box 1550 

Oakhurst, CA 93644 

(800) 523-7050 or (209) 642-0700 


445 Hamilton Ave. 

White Plains, NY 10601 

(800) 776-3449 or (914) 448-8000 

c^ree Splint 



International Orders 1-317-878-5342 
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Circle Reader Service Number 115 



900 MHz breakthrough! 

New technology launches 
wireless speaker revolution. . . 

Recoton develops breakthrough technology which transmits 
stereo sound through walls, ceilings and floors up to ISO feet 

) ' 

By Charles Anton 

If you had to name just 
one new product "the 
most innovative of the 
year/' what would you 
choose? Well, at the recent International 
Consumer Electronics Sluno, critics gave Recoton's 
new wireless stereo speaker system the Design 
and Engineering Award 
for being the "most in- 
novative and outstand- 
ing new product." 

Recoton was able to 
introduce this whole 
new generation of 
powerful wireless 
speakers due to the ad- 
vent of 900 MHz tech- 
nology. This newly 
approved breakthrough 
enables Recoton's wire- 
less speakers to rival the 
sound of expensive 
wired speakers. 

Recently approved 
technology. In June 
of 1989, the Federal 
Communications Com- 
mission allocated a 
band of radio frequen- 
cies stretching from 902 
to 928 MHz for wireless, 
in-home product ap- 
plications. Recoton, one 
of the world's leading wireless speaker man- 
ufacturers, took advantage of the FCC ruling 
by creating and introducing a new speaker 
system that utilizes the recently approved fre- 
quency band to transmit clearer, stronger 
stereo signals throughout your home. 

150 foot range through walls! 

Recoton gives you the freedom to lis- 
ten to music wherever you want. Your 
music is no longer limited to the room your 
stereo is in. With the wireless headphones 
you can listen to your TV, stereo or CD 
player while you move freely between 
rooms, exercise or do other activities. And 
unlike infrared headphones, you don't have 
to be in a line-of-sight with the transmit- 
ter, giving you a full 150 foot range. 

The headphones and speakers have 
their own built-in receiver, so no wires are 
needed between you and your stereo. One 
transmitter operates an unlimited number 
of speakers and headphones. 

# — u 

Recoton's transmitter sends music through waits 
to wireless speakers aver a 75,000 square foot area. 

Crisp sound throughout your 
home. Just imagine being able to 
listen to your stereo, TV, VCR or CD 
player in any room of your home with- 
out having to run miles of speaker wire. 
Plus, you'll never have to worry about range 
because the new 900 MHz technology allows 
stereo signals to travel 
over distances of 150 feet 
or more through walls, 
ceilings and floors with- 
out losing sound quality. 
One transmitter, un- 
limited receivers. The 
powerful transmitter 
plugs into a headphone, 
audio-out or tape-out jack 
on your stereo or TV com- 
ponent, transmitting mu- 
sic wirelessly to your 
speakers or headphones. 
The speakers plug into an 
outlet. The one transmit- 
ter can broadcast to an un- 
limited number of stereo 
speakers and headphones. 
And since each speaker 
contains its own built in 
receiver/amplifier, there 
are no wires running from 
the stereo to the speakers. 
Full dynamic range. 
The speaker, mounted in 
a bookshelf-sized acoustically constructed cab- 
inet, provides a two-way bass reflex design 
for individual bass boost control. Full dynamic 
range is achieved by the use of a 2" tweeter 
and 4" woofer. Plus, automatic digital lock-in 


Built-in receiver Volute 
and amplifier: 

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Frequency Resjx)nse: 

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When the IBM-clone market 
erupted in the mid 1980s, 
Leading Edge was one of 
the first popular mass-mar- 
ket brands. Alas, it was also 
one of the first famous cas- 
ualties, and when the compa- 
ny folded, the Leading 
Edge brand name became 
the property of Korea's 
Daewoo Electronics. Now, af- 
ter several years' absence, 
Leading Edge PCs are 
once again available, includ- 
ing the WinPro Entertainer, 
or 486e, a high-perform- 
ance multimedia PC from 
the reconstituted Leading 

With its 66-MHz CPU, 
VESA local-bus graphics, 
and double-speed Sony CD- 
ROM drive, the WinPro is 
powerful enough to handle 
the most demanding multime- 
dia applications. The 16-bit 
Creative Labs sound card de- 
livers its sound through 
small but functional Labtec 
speakers or headphones, 
both included with the 486e. 
And now that memory is be- 
coming more and more im- 
portant as Windows pro- 
grams keep getting larger, 
the WinPro Entertainer's 
8MB of RAM and 260MB 
hard drive put it a notch 
above the baseline for budg- 
et PCs. 

A selection of preinstalled 
software helps to sweeten 
the deal. In addition to the 
usual operating software — 
DOS 6.2 and Windows 3.1 — 
the WinPro Entertainer in- 
cludes Microsoft Works, ver- 
sion 3.0; Microsoft Money; 
and the Windows Entertain- 
ment Pack game collection; 
plus four CD-ROMs: Groli- 
er's New Multimedia Encyclo- 
pedia, the Time Almanac (un- 
fortunately, a 1993 edition), 
Dr. T's Sing-A-Long, and the 

With a 66-MHz CPU, VESA local-bus graphics, and double-speed 
Sony CD-ROM drive, the WinPro is fast and powerful. 

Multimedia Audio Collection. 

This all adds up to a well- 
equipped system with 
above-average value, but 
there are a few loose ends 
and cut corners. My key- 
board keys tended to rattle 
and didn't give any tactile 
feedback, and a sharp 
edge on the underside of 
the mouse tended to snag 
on my mouse pad. The local- 
bus video adapter worked 
well for multimedia software, 
but buyers looking to run a 
wider range of programs 
might wish the WinPro had 
an accelerated video board 
instead of the plain SVGA 
card. Applications that dis- 
play complex, highly struc- 
tured screens, such as desk- 
top publishing and illustra- 
tion software, will suffer 
most from the lack of graph- 
ics acceleration. 

Like many new systems 
with preloaded software, the 
WinPro doesn't include flop- 
py copies of the preinstalled 
programs — not even DOS 
or Windows. A Windows- 
based disk utility program 
can re-create the floppies, 
and it's worth using for safe- 
ty's sake. But buyers will 

have to provide all the 
blank disks for this opera- 

When it arrived for test- 
ing, the WinPro Entertainer al- 
so had a subtle configura- 
tion glitch. Windows wasn't 
loading an important multime- 
dia device driver, which 
meant several popular CD- 
ROM programs couldn't ac- 
cess the audio tracks on 
their discs. I've become ac- 
customed to dealing with 
problems like this — they're 
fairly common when you up- 
grade an existing PC with 
an add-on multimedia kit — 
and the fix to this one was 
fairly simple: I edited the SYS- 
TEM. INI configuration file to 
load the drivers in a differ- 
ent order. But factory-inte- 
grated computer packages 
are supposed to spare you 
these hassles. When you 
buy a ready-to-run multime- 
dia system, you have a right 
to expect the manufacturer 
to sort through this stuff for 
you ahead of time. 

The WinPro Entertainer 
combines ample processing 
power, adequate storage, 
and name-brand multimedia 
components to easily han- 

dle the demands of CD- 
ROMs, games, and educa- 
tional programs— reasona- 
ble value for the money. 
And while it's good to see 
Leading Edge computers 
back on the shelves, 
Daewoo might pay closer at- 
tention to the details if it 
hopes to regain Leading 
Edge's former status. 


Leading Edge Products 

(508) 836-4800 


Circle Reader Service Number 434 


It never ceases to amaze 
me how some of the most 
useless software is priced at 
$900, while the most useful 
is often as low as $90. In the 
Black falls into the latter cat- 
egory. For a mere $89 you 
get all the accounting and 
contact management func- 
tions you need for your 
small business or personal 

At first I was skeptical 
about In the Black because 
I've never found a contact 
manager or an accounting 
package that would satisfy 
my business and personal 
needs — not one that would 
justify the space it took up 
on my hard drive anyway. 
But after installing In the 
Black, which takes up 
11,250 bytes of RAM, I real- 
ized what power I had just 
placed at my fingertips. 

One plus I found was in 
the ability to choose which 
type of language I wanted: 
accounting or nonaccount- 
ing. Being a nonaccountant, 
nonaccounting is what I 
chose. I then ran the soft- 
ware through my no-docu- 
mentation test, which it 
passed with flying colors. I 
was able to install the soft- 
ware, run through the tutori- 
al, and set up my bank ac- 



count and general ledger 
account, all without looking 
at the documentation. On- 
line help comes to the res- 
cue when you need it. 

Another plus was the way 
In the Black told me I was do- 
ing the wrong thing. When I 
attempted to set up an ac- 
count in Accounts Receiva- 
ble, I was instantly popped 
into the contact manager to 
set up the contact. The only 
sticky point was when I 
tried to add more than one 
contact name in a file in the 
contact manager, but I click- 
ed around on a few buttons 
until I found the one that 

Overall, I found In the 
Black to be a power-packed 
product for two reasons: 
First, you can do things like 
track bank accounts, print 
invoices and mailing labels, 
and graph any set of data 
you choose; second, you'll 
never outgrow In the Black. 
Because it's based on Mi- 
crohm's R.BASE database, 
there's no limit to the 
amount of data you can 
store. And Microrim plans to 
release add-on products, 
such as inventory and pay- 
roll modules, to keep your 
software growing right along 
with your business. 



(800) 628-6990 


Circle Reader Service Number 435 


It's ba-ack. The best-selling 
text adventure from Infocom 
(a division of Activision) that 
revolutionized computer gam- 
ing 16 years ago has been 
reincarnated under the title 
Return to Zork. But other 
than the name and a few su- 
perficial similarities, any rela- 
tionship to the original is 
purely coincidental. 


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For a mere $89, In the Black gives you all the accounting and 
contact management functions you'll probably need. 

Return to Zork could best be described as an interactive movie adven- 
ture starring digitized full-motion film sequences. 

Gamers expecting to find 
a CD-ROM version of the 
original Zork series are go- 
ing to be disappointed: This 
is a whole new game. RTZ 
could best be described as 
an interactive movie adven- 
ture starring digitized full- 
motion film sequences. Pro- 
fessional talent, colorful cos- 
tumes, authentically detailed 
sets and locations, and a 
theatrical-quality soundtrack 
make it look and play like a 
Hollywood movie. 

A lot of effort went into 
the production of RTZ, and 
it shows. Too bad the same 
effort didn't go into the actu- 
al game. Intellectually, RTZ 
is beyond difficult, border- 
ing on the impossible. A few 
puzzles echo the old 
Zorkian humor, but many 
are merely obscure or com- 
pletely unfathomable. True, 
the game does provide 
hints and clues, but the plot 
is so muddy and the clues 
so vague that they just add 

to the confusion. 

The easy-to-use interface 
is completely icon driven — 
all you do is point and click. 
Animated icons and picture 
menus illustrate all the avail- 
able options. Movement is al- 
so mouse controlled. In- 
stead of exits being dis- 
played or described, the cur- 
sor changes into a red navi- 
gation arrow that points in dif- 
ferent directions as it's 
moved around the screen. 
For all its simplicity, though, 
this system has a big flaw: 
There's no text interface. Peo- 
ple accustomed to the 
speed and flexibility of a text- 
only parser are going to feel 

There are some neat fea- 
tures that help make up for 
the textless interface, howev- 
er. One is a camera that 
lets you take pictures of eve- 
rything you encounter; anoth- 
er is a tape recorder that au- 
tomatically records all your 
conversations. You show 
the pictures to characters 
so they'll give you clues, 
and you use the recorder to 
track the clues — a nice 

RTZ isn't completely non- 
linear, but you can tackle 
puzzles in almost any order 
and backtrack to pick up 
things you might have 
missed. This is an important 
feature, since the game will 
let you go all the way to the 
end without much of a clue 
that you're missing a critical 
item. In other words, you're 
going to have to backtrack 
a lot. 

While the CD version of 
RTZ is an audio-visual treat, 
the disk version is a weak 
facsimile. It's a bit like the 
old book-and-movie cliche: 
Don't see the film if you've 
read the book. In this case, 
don't play the disk version if 
you've seen the CD-ROM. 
All the full-motion film se- 
quences and scene transi- 

Could You Use $25,000 This Month? 

This is the Easiest Money in the Country! 

I want to show you where to get $25,000 
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Follow my simple directions, and you 
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I should know, I practically own every 
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• How you can work whenever you feel like 
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ONE MAN MAKES $2,000,000 

I know of a man who lives in California 
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Pablo Gonzalez arrived in the U.S. from 
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yet Pablo made $2,500 in one day, 
using one of these incredible methods. 


My unique computer methods are so 
easy, some people are making a fortune 
practically overnight. They are getting 
$25,000 and more, just by using a bor- 
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Even if you don't know one thing about a 
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All you need to do is follow my simple 
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Take it from me, you can work 16 hours 
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never have anything. Or you can work a 
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of Computer Cash, and end up with thou- 
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Remember, you can buy every system 
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Nothing will make you money like my 
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If you want thousands of dollars in your 
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Genesis Unlimited 

6066 Shingle Creek Pky. 
Suite 182, Dept COM94 
Minneapolis, MJsf 55430 
Dear Ken, 

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of buying worthless programs that can 
never make me real money. But with 
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I also understand I have nothing to lose, 
because if I am not completely satisfied 
with the secrets, I can return them 
within 30 days for a complete refund. 
On that basis, here is my $21.95 + $2.00 
for postage & handling. 


Address _ 




International orders- enclose payment in U.S. 
funds and add an extra $5.00 for postage & 

handling-Thank You. 

< Genesis Unlimited 


tions are missing, charac- 
ters talk with a simple 
hinged-jaw animation, and 
the audio seems thin and 
scratchy in comparison. 

RTZ was definitely made 
for CD-ROM. If you want to 
survive it, take everything 
that isn't bolted down, pho- 
tograph everything that 
moves, show pictures and 
items to everything that 
breathes, and save every 
chance you get. When you 
get frustrated, stab the may- 
or, blow up the incinerator, 
or aggravate a vulture. 
None of these actions will 
help you win the game, but 
you'll feel better. And RTZ 
can be a lot of fun as long 
as you don't play to win. 



(800) 477-3650 


Circle Reader Service Number 436 


Stacker 4.0, the latest ver- 
sion of the popular disk-com- 
pression utility, uses new 
SmartPack technology to 
give better than two-to-one 
compression on many 

How much additional com- 
pression this upgrade pro- 
vides depends on the kinds 
of data you have on your 
hard disk. Two drives — one 
compressed with Dou- 
bleSpace and one with 
Stacker 3.1— went from 
1.7:1 compression to 2:1 
when I upgraded them to 
Stacker 4.0. Both drives had 
a nearly equal mix of data 
and applications. Another 
drive, which contained 
many database and uncom- 
pressed BMP graphics files, 
went to an amazing 2.5:1 
compression ratio, storing 
500MB of data on a 200MB 
hard drive. My home PC, 
packed almost exclusively 




Slacker Toolbox -C: 

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Badujp Status 



Balnea c6mprt>HHh>n and speed 

Stacker's enhanced Windows interface lets you view compression 
ratios, free space, fragmentation, and more. 

■gr^^PiciEiiErsns ke trnESBB^SHr^ir? 

With Harvard Graphics, you can add sound effects, including WAV 
files, MIDI music, and, in the background, CD audio. 

with applications software 
and games, didn't gain any 
extra space when upgrad- 
ing to 4.0, remaining at a 
1.7:1 compression ratio. 

Stacker 4.0 uses the Nov- 
ell DPMS protected-mode 
memory driver and requires 
only 17K of memory below 
1MB on DOS 6 systems. (If 
you're using the QEMM mem- 
ory manager or DOS 5, 
though, you'll have to sacri- 
fice 44K of memory for the 
driver, since Stacker's 
DPMS driver won't work 
with QEMM's DPMI driver.) 
As with Stacker 3.1 , the driv- 
er loads before COM- 
MAND. COM, so you don't 

have to deal with swapping 
drives in your CONFIG.SYS 
file. Although you still use 
DOS to install and configure 
Stacker, an enhanced Win- 
dows interface lets you view 
compression ratios, free 
space, fragmentation, and 
the percentage of files 
you've backed up. 

On a fast 486 using the 
best compression ratio, 
Stacker 4.0 didn't cause any 
noticeable change in hard- 
disk access speed. On an 
old 286 notebook, though, 
the drive was noticeably slow- 
er at highest compression. 

I had no compatibility 
problems with Stacker 4.0. 

Nearly all disk utilities, such 
as Undelete, work fine on 
compressed disks. A few 
don't — the disk optimizer in 
Norton Utilities 8.0 is one ex- 
ample — but they duplicate 
functions included with the 
Stacker package anyway. 

Stacker 4.0 is a mature, re- 
liable product that will come 
in handy for anyone who 
needs more disk space — 
and who doesn't? 



(619) 431-7474 


Circle Reader Service Number 437 


There's an old saying that 
you never get a second 
chance to make a first im- 
pression, You won't need a 
second chance with the 
help of Harvard Graphics; it 
puts flashy graphics power 
in the hands of nongraphical- 
ly oriented users. 

One of this program's 
best features is its interface. 
From the customizable icon 
bar to the graphical dialog 
boxes, the interface is more 
than easy to use; it's actually 
convenient. You can create 
different icon bars by add- 
ing, deleting, and rearrang- 
ing the toolbar icons; editing 
commands are simplified 
and streamlined; the often- 
neglected right mouse button 
is used to pull up menus ap- 
propriate to the current task; 
and dialog boxes dealing 
with graphics actually use 
graphics to show their pur- 
pose. Even better, the dialog 
boxes are visually interactive 
and show previews of 
planned changes before you 
alter your presentation. 

Unfortunately, all Win- 
dows programs seem to be 
afflicted with icons whose 
functions are impossible to 

guess — and Harvard Graph- 
ics is no exception. For exam- 
ple, the Open Symbol Li- 
brary icon is a picture of a 
truck. How intuitive. But at 
least when you pass the 
pointer over an icon, its func- 
tion appears in the title bar 
on top of the screen in a 
font that's readable even in 
high screen resolutions. Add- 
ing to the overall usefulness 
of the interface is context- 
sensitive help in the form of 
an onscreen Advisor col- 
umn, a five-minute coach tu- 
torial, and full OLE support. 
Presentations are built 
around presentation styles — 
master templates that main- 
tain a unified visual style 
throughout the entire slide 
show by making sure every 
screen has a similar look 

and feel. There are 31 of 
these styles and 12 different 
slide types within each. The 
slide types contain 88 op- 
tions, from different cover 
page layouts to bar graphs 
to organizational charts. All 
you have to do is type in or 
import your text and numeri- 
cal data, and you have an in- 
stant slide show. Don't like 
the available templates or 
slide types? You can make 
your own. 

Once created, slides can 
be further manipulated: 
They can be reordered in a 
special slide sorter view or 
an outline view, and you 
can add clip art from the 
more than 500 selections in- 
cluded or import pictures in 
GIF, TIF, PIC, Windows Me- 
tafile, and a host of other for- 

mats. You can add text; 
graphs with imported data; 
and 51 transitional effects 
such as wipes, blinds, and 
irises; and you can alter the 
color scheme with palette 

To liven your presentation 
even more, Harvard Graph- 
ics includes a special-ef- 
fects module called Harvard 
FX that lets you add or cre- 
ate structured draw images 
and add creative flourishes 
to existing art. Text can be 
embossed, backlit, extrud- 
ed, shaded, shadowed, 
made metallic, twisted, 
curved, textured, and made 
three dimensional. Bitmap- 
ped art can be enhanced 
as well. 

To further punch up pres- 
entations, Harvard Graphics 

gives you some limited mul- 
timedia options. You can 
add audio directly through 
WAV sound effects and 
MIDI music and in the back- 
ground through CD audio. 
The Hypershow tool lets you 
play back FLC, FLi, and 
MMM animation and AVI and 
Quicktime videos. Also, you 
can define buttons that will 
trigger screen-show effects 
during the presentation. 

Your presentation can be 
run from the program or con- 
densed into a runtime mod- 
ule that will run without Har- 
vard Graphics. You can 
even run it from DOS on ma- 
chines without Windows- 
something few Windows 
presentation packages can 
do. Screen shows can be 
conferenced — run across net- 

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Mail this coupon along with payment to 

324 W* Wendover Ave, 
Greensboro, NC 27408 

For faster service fax your credit card 
order to 

(910) 275^9837 

All payments must be made In US 
funds drawn on a US bank. Please 
allow four weeks for delivery. Offer 
good while supplies last 

NY & NC orders please 
add sales tax; Canadian 
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Form of payment 
1 Check 

□ Money Order 

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Credit Card # 





works and modem connec- 
tions — and users can draw 
onscreen during a presenta- 
tion or look at slides out of se- 
quence in response to audi- 
ence input. 

There's a lot to like about 
Harvard Graphics. While it's 
really no more powerful than 
other presentation programs 
(despite some unique fea- 
tures in Harvard FX), it has 
an ease-of-learning factor 
that's simply unbeatable. If 
you've never made a presen- 
tation before and you have to 
make one tomorrow, this pro- 
gram's for you. 


Software Publishing 

(800) 234-2500 


Circle Reader Service Number 438 


Do ledgers, taxes, and rec- 
onciling checkbook balanc- 
es send you running to the 
nearest accountant? One 
painless way to get control 
of your company's finances 
is Quickbooks from Intuit, 
and you won't need 30 
hours of accounting classes 
to use it. Just write invoices 
and pay bills the way you al- 
ways have. Quickbooks 
does all the accounting you 
need in the background, 
and you never have to enter 
anything twice. 

Your first step is setting 
up your company's chart of 
accounts. Quickbooks of- 
fers a preset list of charts 
you can customize for your 
own use to track the money 
that flows in and out of your 
company. Every transaction 
you make through Quick- 
books will be assigned to 
one of those accounts; you 
get a running balance sheet 
that lets you know to the pen- 
ny the financial state of your 

Transactions are a 


Payiol Expenses 


■ , ubcortiadoi ejqseroe 

23 58 

i. : Materials expense 


■ Rent 


■ Instance expense 

10 71 

■ "ravel & Entertainment 


f Licenses 


1 Intefest expense 


■ Telephone 


11 Dekvery 


■ Othet 



O Income ® Expense 

Quickbooks has 50 preset reports and graphs, or you can 
customize your own reports to suit your business needs. 

This sophisticated, powerful laser printer is equally appropriate for 
individuals, work groups, and networks. 

breeze. Invoices look like in- 
voices, and checks look like 
checks. Simply enter your 
bills as you receive them. 
Each bill is assigned to an 
account or divided among 
as many accounts as you 
want. Quickbooks prompts 
you for any information need- 
ed about customers or ven- 
dors, and the information is 
saved in lists. When you pay 
bills and write checks, Quick- 
books uses these lists to fill 

in most of the information for 
you. After a while, you'll find 
yourself doing very little typ- 
ing at all. 

When your bills are due, 
Quickbooks prompts you 
with a reminder window. 
Then you can choose either 
to pay all the bills at one 
time or to make partial pay- 
ments on some. Quickbooks 
also allows you the flexibility 
of multiple checking ac- 
counts and will even print 

the checks for you. Simply 
pull up the checking-ac- 
count ledger, double-click 
on the bill, and the checks 
appear written out for you. 
You don't have to print out 
your checks, however; you 
can continue to write them 
manually if you want or pay 
them electronically through 

Whenever you're ready to 
see where you are, you can 
always pull up any of the 50 
preset reports or customize 
your own reports to suit 
your business needs. If you 
prefer a little color, Quick- 
books can create graphs as 

But Quickbooks is much 
more than a glorified check- 
book. It will also handle 
cash sales, create invoices, 
and receive payments. 
Quickbooks provides three 
different types of invoices 
and lets you track custom- 
ers, assign credit limits, and 
accept payments in cash or 
by check or credit card. 

QCards is another handy 
feature that's included. Tuto- 
rial cards appear with each 
window to explain how eve- 
rything inside the window 
works. Once you've learned 
your way around the soft- 
ware, you can shut off 
QCards through Preferenc- 
es. Quickbooks also in- 
cludes a calculator, but you 
probably won't need it, 
since the software does 
most of the math for you. 

Don't worry if you're not 
sure what a debit is or how 
FICA works: Quickbooks us- 
es hardly any technical jar- 
gon; everything is written in 
plain English. You'll be 
amazed at how quickly your 
books fall into place. 



(800) 624-8742 


Circle Reader Service Number 439 




Brother International's new 
HL-10h ten-page-per-min- 
ute, 600 x 600 dpi LaserJet 
4/PostScript-compatible la- 
ser printer offers a lot in a 
small-footprint package. 

For one, the HL-10h 
comes network friendly with 
three types of interfaces: se- 
rial, high-speed bidirectional 
parallel, and an MIO (modu- 
lar input/output) interface 
that ties into Novell, Ethernet, 
Token Ring, and other net- 
works. Even if you don't 
need network capacity now, 
the HL-10h is ready when 
you do. The printer also sens- 
es and responds to changes 
in emulations, including Las- 
erJet 4 and PostScript, and 
earlier modes like Epson FX- 
850, Diablo 630, and the IBM 
ProPrinter XL. 

We tested the HL-1 Oh by 
installing it to a 486SX-25 
that's part of a Novell Net- 
Ware Lite network. We sent 
pages to the printer from a 
variety of Windows applica- 
tions, both directly and from 
other computers on the net- 
work. The printer was fast 
and correctly sensed the em- 
ulation being sent. Applica- 
tions printed flawlessly. 

While the HL-10h's 600 
dpi goes a long way in help- 
ing you achieve professional- 
looking documents by put- 
ting out near typeset quality 
pages, a lot of other power- 
ful features assist you as 
well. An internal 20-MHz 32- 
bit microprocessor handles 
extensive graphics and text 
applications and automatical- 
ly smooths out jagged edg- 
es on characters and fig- 
ures, while an optimized Win- 
dows driver provides for 
greater throughput. Eighty- 
three resident fonts are in- 
cluded, as well as 256 
shades of gray that make 

for near photographic out- 
put. Paper sizes include let- 
ter, legal, A4, B5, enve- 
lopes, transparencies, and 
laser label sheets. The adjust- 
able paper drawer holds 
250 sheets of paper. 

One major performance 
difference between the HL- 
10h and older laser printers 
is in sharpness of text and 
graphics. Moving from 300 
dpi to 600 dpi isn't a simple 
doubling of resolution as 
you might expect: This print- 
er actually produces four 
times as many dots on a 
page. We printed a number 
of examples, pushing the 
printer up to 100 Ipi, and 
got excellent results. 

We printed a wide range 
of Type 1 and TrueType 
fonts on the HL-10h, and it 
handled all of them with 
aplomb. An installer program 
is included for adding scala- 
ble PCL5 fonts, and there's a 
slot on the printer for Laser- 
Jet 4 font cartridges. 

We think you should plan 
on upgrading the HL-10h's 
memory from its standard 
2MB to a higher value to 
take full advantage of the 
printer's 600-dpi resolution. 
While a full page of text is 
no problem at 600 dpi, 
more complicated pages, 
such as photographs, tend 
to bog down or not print en- 
tirely. You can add up to 
32MB of RAM (for a total of 
34MB) internally, using stan- 
dard SIMM memory chips. 
Or, use the external PC- 
MCIA slot to add a flash 
memory card. A total of 
about 6MB would be 
enough for most users. 

The HL-10h's front control 
panel isn't as confusing as it 
can be on many laser print- 
ers, and its easy-to-read 
LED display scrolls through 
the various printer options. 
Documentation is a little bet- 
ter than what we've encoun- 
tered for most printers. 

The second release 
in the Amtex Pinball 
Classic Series of 
adaptations of real 
pinball machines. 
Royal Flush brings 
the experience of 
REAL pinball to the 

v Jokers are wild in 
this pinball poker 
delight as you try for your five 
card combinations by targeting 
nine drop targets, three kick- 
out saucers and three bonus 
~ j & rollover lanes. Wide open, 
fast paced and challenging! 


• Two exciting ways to 
play, You have the choice of 
playing this great game on 
either a dynamic* 
scrolling screen or the 
new, hi-res stationary 

• Authentic back box 
adjustments. Swing open 
the back box and set 
your game for 3-bafl or 
5-ball - even adjust the 
replay thresholds, incline 
and voltage, 

• Magnet Ball Mode. Use your mouse to 
activate a powerful magnet, then draw the 
ball around to explore game strategy at wi 

Look for Tristan™ and Eight Ball Deluxe** 
in stores now. Available for both IBM PC 

and Macintosh systems* 
Eight Bail Deluxe Version 2 Now Available, 

For product information contact: 

AMTEX Software Corporation 

R0, Box 572, Belleville, Ontario 

Canada K8N 5B2 Or call 

(613) 967-7900 Fax (€13) 967-7902 

Circle Reader Service Number 261 


The Brother HL-10h re- 
quires an IBM-compatible 
PC with a standard parallel 
printer port, serial interface, 
or Hewlett-Packard MIO- 
compatible interface. At a 
suggested retail price of 
$1,695, this sophisticated, 
powerful laser printer is 
equally appropriate for indi- 
viduals, work groups, and 
networks. We would choose 
it over the LaserJet 4. 


Brother International 

(800) 276-7746 


Circle Reader Service Number 440 


Finally, some bugs you 
won't mind having in your 
computer — especially if 
you're the parents of chil- 
dren three to eight years old 
(and perhaps a bit older). 
Youngsters will find Bug Ad- 
venture a fascinating jour- 
ney — packed with short vid- 
eo clips and photographs of 
familiar and exotic bugs. 

This CD-ROM or disk- 
based adventure for DOS 
and Windows includes the 
usual friendly interface 
found on all Knowledge Ad- 
venture products — an ap- 
proachable full-color photo- 
graph overlaid with illustra- 
tions. Move the pointer (a 
bug, of course), using the 
mouse or arrow keys, to any 
of the objects on the 
screen, and text appears to 
tell you where you'll be head- 
ing if you press Enter or 
click the mouse. Most chil- 
dren will feel right at home 
using Bug Adventure's friend- 
ly interface. 

Five activities make up 
the program's six parts. Can 
You Find Me? asks simple 
questions — Which bug is 
loudest? Which bug is 
longest?— and the child 
must select the appropriate 


With its free-form design that allows you to roam and explore, Bug 
Adventure is like having your own bug museum. 







^wkUai H 





^^" p 


**!>**«> y 







■HMD** m 


7i aa^M 

1 Hrfp... J? 

Engaging and challenging, WordSmart helps you build your 
vocabulary with voice and sound effects. 

picture. Honey Comb Thea- 
ter includes 15 video clips 
featuring a variety of bugs. 
Other areas include Bug Sto- 
rybook, Who Am I?, and 3- 
D Bug Basement. Picture 
and video-clip quality varies 
throughout, generally from 
good to excellent. 

Richest, though least in- 
spired, of the six parts of 
Bug Adventure is the Bug 
Reference, Here children 
can explore and learn 
about bugs through an en- 
cyclopedia-like reference. 

Each entry includes a video 
of a bug along with text chil- 
dren can read (or have 
read to them). 

With its free-form design 
allowing children to roam 
and explore, Bug Adventure 
is like having your own bug 


Knowledge Adventure 
(800) 542-4240 
$69.95 (CD-ROM) 
$29.95 (disk) 

Circle Reader Service Number 441 


Need vocabulary power? If 
you're equipped with Win- 
dows and a CD-ROM drive, 
check out WordSmart. This 
interactive program consists 
of a series of study drills on 
hundreds of words — thou- 
sands if you decide to pur- 
chase the nine other CD- 
ROM volumes available. 

You choose between five 
study exercises; each one in- 
structs in a different manner 
so that choosing Multiple 
Choice, for example, means 
listening to voice pronuncia- 
tions, while Sentence Com- 
pletion lets you key in a 
word for spelling practice. 

The Multiple Choice op- 
tion shows the true power of 
this program: A detailed au- 
dio discussion accompa- 
nies every word in a diction- 
ary-entry type of format. Cor- 
rectly matching similar 
terms enables you to view 
an extended definition, 
which also includes anto- 
nyms, synonyms, and deriva- 
tions. A recorded voice 
reads the definition and 
even gives a brief history of 
the word or explains what a 
certain percentage of peo- 
ple believe the word 
means. You can repeat the 
recording or go to any part 
of it simpty by clicking on 
the line in the definition. La- 
ser Review and Flashcards 
include a timer to let you 
see how fast you're learn- 

WordSmart records per- 
centage scores on each 
study exercise and gener- 
ates a study recommenda- 
tion for which volume of 
words to review. Old and 
young alike will enjoy the pro- 
gram's easy interaction with 
simple mouse commands, 
and kids should have no 
trouble using the main 
menu. While WordSmart 
isn't a game per se, it does 

present an entertaining chal- 
lenge through its different 
drills and will keep you 
glued to the screen with mu- 
sic, sound effects, and hu- 
man voice recordings. 

WordSmart comes with vol- 
ume C, which contains 
more than 200 words of av- 
erage skill level and enough 
to keep you busy for a 
while. However, to enjoy the 
complete range of vocabu- 
lary, you'll have to purchase 
the nine supplementary CD- 
ROM volumes: A, B, and D- 
J. Each successive volume 
becomes more difficult: Vol- 
ume A contains more com- 
mon words, while J comes 
with words unknown to 90 
percent of adults. Spend 
just one hour with Word- 
Smart, and you may come 
to realize, no matter who 
you are, just how little 
you've been saying. 


Smartex Software 

(800) 858-9673 

$64.95 (Windows, CD-ROM) 

$59.95 (DOS) 

Circle Reader Service Number 442 


If you're in the market for a 
strong, dependable, and rel- 
atively inexpensive notebook, 
perhaps you should check 
out the Compaq Contura 
4/25c. This durable little com- 
puter has a power-saving 
486SL-25 CPU, a 9 1 /2-inch 
dual-scan passive matrix dis- 
play that can show up to 256 
vivid colors, and a 120MB 
hard disk. The basic configu- 
ration ships with 4MB of 
RAM and sells for $2,099. 
However, to ensure that the 
machine would run COM- 
PUTE'S benchmark tests, we 
asked Compaq to equip it 
with 8MB (with the extra mem- 
ory, the price is $2,338). 
To test the Contura's 

speed, I ran the industry-stan- 
dard BAPCo SYSmark test 
(see the notebook roundup 
in this issue for a description 
of the test). The test runs sev- 
eral real-world applications 
and compares the speed to 
that of a desktop 486DX-33. 
The Contura runs about 30 
percent more slowly than 
the calibration system, 
which is good for an SL-25. 
Many of the notebooks I've 
looked at lately (even those 
with faster clock speeds) 
don't do that well. 

Also impressive is the Con- 
tura's performance on the 
battery-life tests. To see 
how long the battery would 
last, I ran a macro that per- 
forms several commands 
repeatedly and accesses 
the hard disk often. The bat- 
tery lasted almost three 
hours each time I ran the 
test. The Contura also has a 
hibernation feature that 
shuts it down to almost nil 
battery consumption when 
it's not in use. 

Like most notebooks, how- 
ever, the Contura isn't per- 
fect. It doesn't, for example, 
support PCMCIA expansion, 
which has become quite pop- 
ular for today's portable com- 
puters. PCMCIA makes con- 
necting peripherals like 
modems, sound cards, and 
external hard disks much 
easier and expands compat- 
ibility for third-party devices. 
If you want to upgrade sys- 
tem memory or add a mo- 
dem to the Contura, you'll 
have to open the system 
and install proprietary 
cards, which is neither fun 
nor cost effective. 

The Contura's keys are 
firm and responsive, but the 
keyboard arrangement is a lit- 
tle strange. The Delete and 
Insert keys, for instance, are 
at the top on the same row 
as the function keys. It's 
hard to get used to looking 
for them there. Another draw- 

magine arriving at the lake as the morning 
mist starts to bum off the quiet waters. You 
stop at the bait shop to select your rod, reel 
and lures, thinking you'll try for some walleye 
this morning. You load the boat and consult 
your map. It s the end of August and its getting 
colder t the walleye will be feeding In shallower 
waters to prepare for winter. You remember a 
spot your fishing buddy told you about and set 
out You arrive at the location, check your 
sonar and position yourself near the edge of 
that underwater shod. The peaceful solitude ts 
broken only by the waves lapping at the boat 
and the loons haunting call echoing across the 
lake. After a few casts, you feel a sharp tug 
and your rod bends suddenly towards the 
water, this must be the big one! With a quick 
jerk you manage to putl him towards the boat 
but he gets another burst of energy and 
speeds towards the deeper watei it's a ooo 
thing you had the drag set corre ly on tr 
After a strenuous andexhaustirf 
pull your quarry to tfie skfe anpi 
the boat. What a beaui ffilbu 
back and see yt r nai 
the fishing lodg 
look at with em 



j buzzes* "Mr. Jones, 
appointment is here." 

Introducing a new series of products 
from Amtex Software Corporation, the 
same company who brought REAL pinball 
to the computer! 

Now get ready to REEL the big one in 
with gone fish-in' in an accurate 
simulation of the Bay of Quinte, 
a Northern Canadian fishing mecca. 

For product information, 

send your name and address to: 

AMTEX Software Corporation 

P.O. Box 572, Belleville, Ontario 

Canada K8N SB2 or call 

(613) 967 7900 Fax <613) 967 7902 


Diqital Fresh Water Fishinq 

Circle Reader Service Number 262 


back is the system's limited 
external monitor support. 
Many of today's notebooks 
support resolutions up to 
1280 x 1024 with multiple 
number-of-color options up 
to 16.7 million. But the Con- 
tura allows you only stan- 
dard VGA (640 x 480) with 
256 colors, which is practical- 
ly useless for working with 
graphics and page layout ap- 
plications. This isn't the ideal 
notebook for a combination 
travel and desktop solution. 

Unlike many other note- 
books, the Contura does 
come with a great pointing 
device — a serial, side-mount- 
ed trackball. While this one 
isn't as convenient as the 
snap-in QuickPort MS Ball- 
Point trackballs used by 
some other notebook ven- 
dors, it's still large enough 
to be easy to use. Small, 
built-in trackballs are often 
difficult to manipulate; this 
one isn't. 

Granted, the Contura 
4/25c isn't on a par with 
some of the more recent 
DX4 notebooks with PC- 
MCIA expansion capability, 
large hard drives, and other 
valuable options, but it's a 
strong performer backed by 
a good company with an 
excellent support and warran- 
ty service record. 





Circle Reader Service Number 443 


Spectrum HoloByte sets the 
skies ablaze with the re- 
lease of MiG-29 and Hornet, 
two hot additions to the soft- 
ware company's impressive 
Electronic Battlefield series. 
MiG-29, available in two ver- 
sions — a stand-alone model 
or an integrated add-on to 


Strong, dependable, and relatively inexpensive, the Compaq 
Contura 4/25c boasts impressive performance and battery life. 

the company's best-selling 
Falcon 3.0— sets a furious 
pace. Both of these versions 
offer advanced combat 
flight simulation fans the abil- 
ity to pit these fearsome war 
machines head to head, 
either with remote modem 
play or with up to six pilots 
linked via a Novell local- 
area network. Whether 
you're flying solo or as part 
of a multiplayer squadron, 
it's an experience totally 
unique to this dynamic and 
exciting genre. 

Veterans of Falcon 3.0 
will feel right at home with 
the game's interface and 
main control panels. Just se- 
lect Instant Action to jump 
right into the cockpit of the 
MiG-29 Fulcrum, the 
Soviet's most advanced fight- 
er/bomber, for a no-frills, 
quick-and-dirty dog fight. 
This is also a great place for 
you to practice new combat 
maneuvers and other flight 
skills. Back in the War 
Room, you can choose Red 
Flag to run a series of train- 
ing missions, each one care- 
fully designed to hone one 

of the many skills that you'll 
need to become an expert pi- 
lot. If you're an experienced 
player, you'll also want to 
use the Red Flag editor to 
design your own missions. 
Especially worth noting are 
the onboard flight recorder 
and the ACMI playback 
unit, which is a sophisticat- 
ed training tool that you'll 
use for analyzing mission 
highlights from inside or 
outside of your aircraft. 

Once you feel fully at 
ease with the abilities of the 
Fulcrum, take off in one of 
six multimission campaign 
scenarios, designed in coun- 
terpoint to selected theaters 
of conflict from Falcon 3.0 
and its add-on mission disk, 
Operation: Fighting Tiger. 
Lead your Soviet squadrons 
against U.S., NATO, and 
Coalition forces in such hot 
spots as Iraq, Syria, Cuba, 
North Korea, and Pakistan. 
Remote or networked serial 
connections let you fly on 
opposite sides of the con- 
flict or, even more exciting, 
as part of multipilot squad- 
rons. Simply put, there's noth- 
ing else like this on the mar- 
ket. Should you choose to 
be a MiG-29 pilot, you'll 
enjoy a slight advantage in 
many areas because of the 
aircraft's extreme speed, 
agile handling, and stability 
during a high angle of 
attack. Other goodies in- 
clude a sensational infrared 
tracking system that not 
only improves weapon accu- 
racy but whose use of pas- 
sive (nonradar) target acqui- 
sition also prevents enemy 
detection of missile or gun 

The third side to this scin- 
tillating series is Hornet, avail- 


Is there a hardware or software product 

you'd like to see reviewed in COMPUTE? 

Let us know by calling 

(900) 285-5239. 

The call will cost 95 cents per minute, 

you must be 18 or older, 

and you must use a touch-tone phone. 

Sponsored by Pure Entertainment, 

505 South Beverly Drive, California 90212. 

I 1994$0242GraiIM 


Ohio man has 21 -year tested formula 
to create multimillion dollar businesses 
from scratch, without bank loans, 
venture capitalists or selling stock 

by John Wiitehead 
(CANTON, OH) A little over 21 years ago, 
a new entrepreneur, Benjamin D. Suarez, 
developed a true formula for making money 
called the Net Profit Generation System or 

With archaic conventional business 
methods which use primitive marketing 
mediums, it usually requires borrowing 
money or selling stock and takes 5 years to 
make a profit. With the NPGS it is possible 
to make a profit on a new business venture 
in a few months to a few hours and without 
borrowing or selling stock. No prior 
business experience is required. With the 
NPGS you can make money at the speed of 
light in "Cyberspace." 

With the NPGS, starting from the 
basement of his home, with no money and 
in debt, Suarez assembled NPGS's and 
made millions of dollars operating them. He 
assembled so many NPGS's that he could 
no longer operate them out of his home. So 
he formed a company to operate them all. 
His company now brings in over $120 
million a year, making more money than 
99.5% of all businesses in the nation. 

Because of the NPGS, he is also one of 
the richest people in the nation. Unlike 
most other major entrepreneurs, he still 
owns 100% of his company and has no debt. 

In 1978, Suarez wrote the best-selling 
book which revealed the NPGS formula, 
titled 7 Steps To Freedom — How to Escape 
the American Rat Race. This book had over 
$10 million in sales ($20 million in today's 
money). This book created many other 
millionaires across the nation who used the 
NPGS to start new business from scratch. 

Suarez has just completed a new revised 
book, 7 Steps To Freedom II — How to 
Escape the American Rat Race, which 
includes many newly developed techniques 
learned over the past 12 years which make 
assembling a NPGS at least 10 times easier 
than it was in the 1970s. Readers will learn 
what no amount of present-day, formal 
education will teach them, even if they have 
numerous PHDs. They will learn how to 
make money. 

With the NPGS Suarez found he could 
create new business from scratch at will. 
His company is now diversified into many 
different businesses. 

The NPGS has been vastly improved 
since the 1970s. Included in these 
improvements is a software package 
developed by Suarez so a person can use a 

personal computer to make assembling and 
operating a NPGS much easier. Also a PC 
enables you to use the ultra-fast, money- 
making medium Suarez calls ICECATS 
(Interactive Computerized Electronic 
Communications and Transaction System) 
popularly called"Online"and "Cyberspace." 

You can produce a Net Profit Generation 
System from anywhere, your home, your 
office or while sitting on a beach on your 

Here are just a few of the valuable items 
of knowledge that will be revealed to you in 
Suarez's new book 7 Steps To Freedom II: 

• How to find quality products that will 

• How to determine with near 100% 
accuracy if a new product that does not 
even exist yet will sell successfully. 

• How to create sales vehicles that will 
generate profits for you on an automatic 
basis, even while youVe sleeping or on 

• How to get free capital which will allow 
you to avoid borrowing money from banks, 
going to venture capitalists and giving away 
your company by selling stock as other 
entrepreneurs must. 

• How to make hundreds of thousands 
of dollars with a NPGS in "Cyberspace" — 
twelve hours after you finish assembling it. 

• How to pay a lower tax rate than other 
people on the money you make from NPGS 
and how the NPGS will allow you to take 
tax-free vacations. 

• How to set up an accounting system 
that will not only give you a weekly pulse of 
your company but also peer into the future 
and predict your financial position three 
months ahead. 

You can use the Net Profit Generation 
System as a financial basis to start your own 
business from home or you can receive 
income from a Net Profit Generation 
System without starting your own business. 
The way to do it without starting your own 
business is simply to produce a successful 
NPGS according to the steps provided in 
this book and then contract with Mr. 
Suarez's company, Suarez Corporation 
Industries (SCI), as a Special Consultant to 
operate your NPGS. They will give you 
royalties as a percentage of the income from 
your NPGS. To receive your own copy of 7 
Steps to Freedom II — How to Escape the 
American Rat Race, fill out the coupon 
below or call right now, 1-800-577-2582, ask 
for operator 7S3045. 

Circle Reader Service Number 307 

Best Selling Author 
Benjamin D. Suarez 

To receive your own copy of 7 Steps to 
Freedom, so you can get started making 
money fill but this coupon or call 
1-800-577-2582 right now! (Ask for 
operator 7S3045). 

□ Yes, send me a copy of 7 Steps to 
Freedom II for only $32. (pcbia) 

J I am enclosing a check or money order 
to SCI. 

Charge my: J VISA Q MasterCard 
□ Discover J Amex 

Acct. n 

Hxp, Date . 
Signature . 





Zip Code 

Mail to: SCI Dept. 7S3045 

7800 Whipple Ave. N.W. 
North Canton, OH 44767 
Not valid in State of Washington. 


\A/e at COMPUTE 

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.95(5 per minute. 

PET Inc., Box 166, Hollywood, CA 90078. 

Must be 18 or older. Touch-tone phones only. 


MiG-29 is a robust addition to Faicon 3.0 in 
the Electronic Battlefield series. 

able only as an add-on accessory to 
both stand-alone versions of Falcon 
3.0 or MiG-29. This one puts you in con- 
trol of the F/A-18 Hornet, a multipur- 
pose, fly-by-wire naval strike fighter. 
Somewhat similar in design to the F- 
16 Falcon, the Hornet is strictly carrier 
based. Though a superb air-to-air fight- 
er, heavily used both for air defense 
and as a fighter escort, the Hornet's 
main area of expertise is air-to-ground 
missions, utilizing up to 15,500 
pounds of deadly payload. In addition 
to duties as fighter escort and air de- 
fense, the simulation requires that you 
master carrier catapult launches and 
three-wire landings, complete with dig- 
itized voice communications with the 
on-deck Landing Signal Officer. The 
game follows the setup and control de- 
sign of the previous titles and can be 
enjoyed alone or linked to Falcon 3.0 
(as friend) and MiG-29 (as foe). In ad- 
dition to two-player modem links, net- 
worked play can actually incorporate 
all three simulations. Hornet features on- 
ly one theater of war, Bosnia-Herzegov- 
ina, but it's politically charged. 

Both MiG-29 and Hornet come 
equipped with Spectrum HoloByte's typ- 
ically outstanding documentation and 
support materials, including full-color 
campaign maps and quick-reference 
cards outlining HUD and cockpit lay- 
outs, as well as each game's extensive 
keyboard commands. The MiG-29 main 
manual weighs in at a hefty 491 pages, 
while the Hornet tips the scales at 110. 

In combat culinary terms, MiG-29 
serves as a robust addition to Falcon 
3.0's main course, while Hornet whets 
the appetite for even greater glory. 
Those wishing to expand their Electron- 
ic Battlefield should consider MiG-29 a 
must-have and Hornet a should-get. 


Spectrum HoloByte 

(800) 695-4263 

$39.95 (MiG-29 add-on) 

$59.95 (MiG-29 stand-alone) 

$39.95 (Hornet add-on) 

Circle Reader Service Number 444 


Pinball is making a comeback, though 
not at your local arcade. A couple of 
new titles have hit the software 
shelves in recent months, each with a 
unique style of adapting the time-hon- 
ored classic to your PC screen. 

From Dynamix comes Take-a-Break 
Pinball for Windows, the only Windows- 
based game of the two and the one of- 
fering the most variety. Eight different 
tables complement the collection, 
each borrowing from a popular Sierra 
or Dynamix game. For instance, three 
"machines" have Space Quest 
themes, two have Nova 9, one has Lei- 
sure Suit Larry, and so on. Each table 
is visually superb, featuring cute anima- 
tions (only in computer pinball can a 
flapping pterodactyl steal your ball), 
but music and sound effects are ab- 
sent unless you own a Windows-com- 
patible sound card, in which case 
they, too, are superb. 

Pinball for Windows suffers from one 
fatal flaw: It's too hard to follow the 
ball. Because the game runs under Win- 
dows and displays the entire table on- 
screen, everything looks small. As a re- 
sult, the tables look so colorful and 
complex that the ball gets lost. And 
while ball speed can be adjusted, 
even that doesn't do the trick. Pinball 
for Windows excels in every area ex- 
cept piayability. 

Amtex's Eight Ball Deluxe is based 
on the classic arcade game of the 
same name. Obviously, the game in- 
cludes only one table, but what a stun- 
ning table it is! Everything is re-creat- 
ed in perfect detail, right down to the 
digitized voice: "Quit talking and start 
chalking." It looks, sounds, and even 
feels like the real thing, and the real 
Eight Ball Deluxe is one heck of a 
good pinbali game. 

Eight Ball Deluxe uses a scrolling 
playfield method. The combination of 
Shift key and space bar is employed 
for flippers and nudging, and up to 
four players can shoot. 

It's also possible to control various 
game options, such as the playfield in- 
cline and the bumper voltage. The lat- 
ter is important, because with the de- 
fault settings, the ball gets bumpered 
down the side alleys almost every 
time. Once that's corrected, however, 
Eight Ball Deluxe is great fun and, like 
pinball, highly addictive. 

Only one problem: Sometimes the 
game doesn't work. My machine perpet- 
ually locked up just seconds after load- 
ing the game. I fiddled with my memo- 


Advertisers' Index 

Reader Service Number/Advertiser 

Page Reader Service Number/Advertiser 

Page Reader Service Number/Advertiser 











Access Software 46,47 258 

Advanced Gravis IBC 257 

AIVR Corporation 115 178 

America On Line 73i 

American Network 109 305 

Amtex Software 99 311 

Amtex Software 101 136 

Automap Inc 35 110 

Bare Bones Software 112 176 

Best Personalized Books 109 303 

Blue Valley Software 112 144 

Bon-Vue Enterprises 114 233 

CH Products 21 191 

Chips & Bits 48 

CompSult 110 

Computer Business Services 108 115 

Computer Friends 112 168 

Computer Gallery 110 256 

Comtrad Industries 45,92 221 

Corel Corporation 5 

Creative Labs 3 

Delphi Internet Services 7 

DemoSource 110 316 

DemoSource 107 

Disks OPIenty 112 

DOMARK 81 138 

Fantazia Concepts 107 306 

Free Spirit Software 91 127 

Function One 112 

Genesis Unlimited 95 133 

Gormet Gallery 114 

GT Interactive 51 

ID Software 85 

Intellimedia Sports Inc 67 116 

Interplay 53 135 

Interplay 89 109 

J & H Services, Inc 114 108 

Jackson Marking Products Co. Inc 109 210 

JEM Marketing 112 132 

J & S Services, Inc 114 

Knowledge Media Inc 110 

LACE 113 

Lawrence Research Group, Inc 106 

Lion's Den International 115 

Lucas Arts 12 

Media Graphics International 107 

Medstar USA 108 

Merit Software 31 

Merit Software 107 

Midwest Software 37 

National Claims Service 110 

Needham's Electronic Inc 111 

NRI/ Mc Graw Hill 33i 

Oldsmobile IFC.1 

Origin 69 

Parsons Technology 23 

Passport 11 

PC Enterprises 112 

Penthouse Modem 113 

Penthouse OnLine 114 

Photodex 110 

Precision Data 108 

PUC-Public Utility Consultants 108 

Quorum 27 

Ramco Computer Supplies 112 

Reality Technologies 43 

REG Publishing 113 

SafeSoft Systems Inc 112 

ScanMaster 107 

School of Computer Training 109 

School of PC Repair 109 

Serif PagePlus 13 

SeXXy Software 114 

Sierra Online BC 

Smart Luck Software 110 

Software Sorcery 65 

Software Support International 115 

Specialty Merchandise Corporation/SMC 109 

308 Suarez Corporation, The 77 

307 Suarez Corporation, The 103 

TAB/ Computer Book Club 41 

Thoughtware 59 

112 U.S. Robotics 9 

243 Uni-Rom 114 

140 Vertigo Active Books 15 

146 Virgin Games 71 

172 Wedgwood Rental 110 

313 WinBook 19 

Windows OnLine 110 

Witman & Company 110 

Classified 117,118,119 

Product Mart 107,108,109 110,112,113,114,115 

COMPUTE Books 10,97,117 

COMPUTE Editors OnLine 104 

COMPUTE SharePak Disk 55 

COMPUTE'S Ultimate Power Disk 73 

Gazette Disk Subscription 60 

Longevity Subscription 57 


Page 4: Mark Wagoner; page 1 6: Mark Wag- 
oner; page 22: Mark Wagoner; page 38: 
©1994 by The Griffin-Lusk Studio; page 61 : 
Rob Schuster; page 62: Rob Schuster; 
page 64: Rob Schuster; page 66: Rob Schust- 
er; page 68: Rob Schuster; page 70: Rob 
Schuster; page 72: Rob Schuster; page 74: 
Mark Wagoner; page 76: Michael Simpson/ 
FPG; page 78: Mark Wagoner; page 82: 
Mark Wagoner; pages 86-87: ©1994 by Cur- 
tis Parker/Scott Hull Associates. 





COMPUTE offers two different disk products for 
PC readers: the SharePak disk and PC Disk. 
SharePak is monthly and has a subscription 
price of $59.95 for 574-inch disks and $64.95 for 
372-inch disks. A subscription to SharePak 
does not include a subscription to the maga- 
zine. PC Disk appears in odd-numbered 
months and has a subscription price of $49.95, 
which includes a subscription to COMPUTE. You 
can subscribe to either disk or to both, but a 
subscription to one does not include a subscrip- 
tion to the other. 



How to order them 
without embarrassment. 

How to use them 
without disappointment. 

If you've been reluctant to purchase 
sensual aides through the mail, we 
would like to offer you three things 
that might change your mind. 

1. We guarantee your privacy. 

Everything we ship is plainly and secure- 
ly wrapped, with no clue to its contents 
from the outside. All transactions are 
strictly confidential, and we never sell, 
rent or trade any customer's name. 

2. We guarantee your satisfaction. 

If a product is unsatisfactory simply 
return it for replacement or refund. 

3. We guarantee that the product you 
choose will keep giving you pleasure. 

Should it malfunction, simply return it to 
us for a replacement. 

What is the Xandria Collection? 

It is a very special collection of the finest 
and most effective sexual products from 
around the world. Il is designed for both 
the timid and the bold or for anyone who 
has ever wished there could be something 
more to their sensual pleasures. 

Celebrate the possibilities for pleasure 
you each have within. Send for the Xan- 
dria Gold Edition Catalogue. Its price of 
$4.00 is applied, in full, to your first order. 

Write today. You have absolutely noth- 
ing to lose, and an entirely new world of 
enjoyment to gain. 

The Xandria Collection, Dept. CP0994 
P.O. Box 31039, San Francisco, CA 94131 

Ptesse send mo, by lirst class mail, the Xandri.i Gold 
Edition Catalogue. Enclosed is my check or money order 
tor S4-00 which will be applied towards mv first purchase. 
($■4 US., 55 CAN,, O U.K.) 

1 am an adult over 21 years of age: 

Signature required 

Add res 

State _ _ Zip 

Xandria, g?4 Dubuque Ave, South San Franusai, (. A 9*Sffl 
Void where prohibited bv law 



ry manager, created a clean boot disk, 
even tried a different video card — all to 
no avail. Finally, I called Amtex's tech 
support and learned that the company 
is "aware of a lockup problem." Unfor- 
tunately, no solution was offered. 

Luckily, the game worked flawlessly 
on a friend's machine, meaning it's pot 
luck for you. Hopefully, Amtex will 
have the problem worked out by the 
time you read this. 



(503) 343-0772 

Take-a-Break Pinball for Windows— $49.95 

Circle Reader Service Number 445 

Amtex Software 

(613) 967-7900 

Eight Ball Deluxe— $49.95 

Circle Reader Service Number 446 

AMBRA 486DX2-50 

The Ambra 486DX2-50 is a great exam- 
ple of the value available in notebook 
computers these days. For about 
$2,000 (street price) you can get a 
screaming DX2-50 processor, a 200MB 
hard drive, and a 256-color dual-scan 
passive-matrix monitor. 

The unit I tested had 8MB of RAM to 
assure it would perform COMPUTE's 
speed tests. The additional 4MB of 
RAM, which you really need if you 
plan to run WordPerfect for Windows or 
most graphics applications, will cost 
you an additional $270. 

In our BAPCo benchmark test (see 
this month's notebook roundup in Test 
Lab for a description of the test), this no- 
tebook ran about 85 percent as fast as 
the desktop 486DX-33 calibration unit. 
Granted, the Ambra machine sports a 
faster processor than the calibration 
computer, but there are several com- 
ponents in notebooks that cause them 
to run slower than desktops. The mini- 
ature hard disks in most portables 
don't run as fast as those in desktop 
computers, nor do the video cards. 
Some companies are now shipping no- 
tebooks with 32-bit local-bus video, 
which greatly enhances speed, but (as 
I write this) you can't get a local-bus no- 
tebook for less than $2,000. (However, 
competition is stiff, and prices are fall- 
ing almost as fast as my fingers can 
plunk out this review,) Still, this note- 
book is plenty fast enough for all but 
the most taxing graphics applications. 

Equally impressive are the battery- 
life times turned in by the Ambra 
486DX2-50. I ran a macro that per- 

formed several common Windows func- 
tions, including accessing the hard 
disk often. Each of the four times I ran 
it, the battery lasted between 2 1 /2 to 3 
hours. If all you plan to do is type or 
work with spreadsheets on the road, 
this one will get you through most 
flights Neither application accesses 
the hard disk often, which conserves 
battery life. 

The Ambra notebook has an easily 
accessible keyboard with an ergonom- 
ically correct wrist rest. You can type 
for a long time without fatiguing your 
arms and wrists, and all of the keys are 
located in the same positions they are 
on desktop keyboards, practically elimi- 
nating the need to hunt and peck. The 
trackball, unfortunately, is located by 
the screen behind the keyboard — an un- 
natural position from which to manipu- 
late the pointer freely. I found myself 
resting my wrist on the keyboard while 
using the mouse, rendering the comput- 
er inoperable until I realized what was 

Another serious design flaw is the 
placement of the power button, which 
is right next to the left trackball button. 
More than once I inadvertently turned 
the machine off during my work, 
which, as you can imagine, can be dis- 
astrous. With this design, Ambra 
should have at least built in some kind 
of warning that allows you to back out 
of a shutdown. The Packard Bell States- 
man, for example, gives you an oppor- 
tunity to save your data before the ma- 
chine powers down. 

I also didn't care much for this note- 
book's small 8-inch screen. Many of 
the other dual-scan notebooks I've 
seen lately sport 9 1 /2- to 10 1 /2-inch 
LCDs. Notebook screens are hard en- 
ough to see; you need all the viewing 
area you can get. The screen on this 
one is adequate only for traveling. How- 
ever, Ambra does offer a docking sta- 
tion for increased expansion, and you 
can hook the notebook up to an exter- 
nal monitor for 800 x 600 resolution 
with 256 colors. There's also a Type III 
PCMCIA slot for plugging in modems, 
sound cards, SCSI, and other expan- 
sion options. The slot holds one Type 
III card or two Type lis. 

This Ambra 486DX2-50 notebook pro- 
vides raw speed, 256-colors, and ex- 
pansion options galore at a great 
price. If you've been waiting for a 
good deal before buying a notebook, 
the wait is over. 


Ambra Computer 
(800) 252-6272 
$2,599 (4MB RAM) 
$2,869 (8MB RAM) 

Circle Reader Service Number 447 L~l 

images are licensed and marketed in association with IAUC 

This incredible clip art sampler contains over 200 superb 
quality images in WMF (Windows Metafile) graphic 
format. Compatible with virtually any Windows 
application including Pagemaker, Corel Draw!, 
Micrographix Designer, Canvas, WordPerfect, Publisher, 
and dozens more! A few of the volumes include, Business, 
Holidays, Sports, Education, Food, and more. 

Send check or money order for 
$9.95 + $3 shipping & handling 
($12.95 totoi) to: 

Media Graphics International 

8175-A Sheridan Blvd #355 

Arvada, CO 80003 

(303) 427-8808 

To Older: 

or CALL 


Circle Reader Service Number 136 

6000 FONTS 

2500 TrueType, 2500 Type 1 
■&& 1 000 Geoworks Format 

*CD-ROM "Not Shareware "All Original 
•Unlocked *No Duplicates 'Categorized 
•Sample Book "Highest Quality Available 

All this for only $49.99* 

m 3000 FONTS 

ty&F 1000 In Each Format 

JT Order today for Only $29.99* 

M ^**Does not include shipping 
These collections were created for those 
4Swho are tired of the "same old fonts' 1 ^ 
Disk sets also available 

Sounds too good to be true??? 
*Ask for free font sample listing** 

Or try "Icons, Wallpaper and More 
for Windows" for only: $29.99 

Fantazia Concepts, Inc. 
35143 Vine Street Eastlake, OH 44095 
800-951-0877 or 216-951-5666 Voice 
21 6-95 1 -924 1 Fax- For faster serv ice I 

Circle Reader Service Number 134 

New FM Pro saves you from 
eight-character file names l 

FM Pro allows you to add a description like 
"Windows Conference - May 8 - first meeting" 
to a file like WCNFMY81 .XLS! Descriptions 
can be up to 254 characters! FM Pro also 
has these additional features: 

• A file viewer! You will know what to type for 
a description after seeing a file displayed. 

• Display and print directory listings with 

• FREE file search utility! $25 value! FM Pro 
frees you from opening many files to find 
the one file you need! 

Only $39.95 + $3 S/H. Requires Windows. 
Money-back guarantee. Order FM Pro now by 
calling 800-241-5934 (MC/VISA/AMEX, open 
24 hours). Send checks/money orders to: 

Midwest Software 

50th and Woodland, Dept. C9 

P.O. Box 22116 

Des Moines, IA 50325 




For ad specifications or more information call 

Lucille Dennis (707) 451-8209 Fax (707) 451-4169 

They'll never 
know you're 
home based! 



Introducing SuiteTalker, our revolutionary mini 
voicemail system for MS-Windows. Designed 
just for small and home-based offices, our soft- 
ware accepts mailorders, sends faxes or records 
messages from only M 195. Even when you're 
working from a garage, you'll sound like a 
Fortune 500. Ask about our '25 Opportunity 
Toolkit loaded widi a variety of voice ventures! 

Try our 24 hr demo! Record your voice! Call: 


You'll gel a *5 rebate on your long distance call 
upon purchase. For live sales support, call 800 
283-4759. All major credit cards accepted. 

pffcemoSource 3 " 1 

The Voice Application Superstore 
• •••••••••• 

8345 FfeMdi Bl St. 202 Northridg.CA 01324 USA 




Your Favorite Photo 

Whatever picture YOU choose 

Customize your 
computer with: 


ScanMaster will 
scan photo's or 

Personalize Windows Wallpaper, Home or 


BE FIRST: Purchase a State-Of-The-Art image 

for your office computer. 

All originals will be returned promptly. 



Send check or money order (and photos) to: 

P.O. Box 6225, Clearwater, FL 34618-9998 

$19.95 plus $2.00 for handling 

(50% off extra scans) 
Windows 3.0 or higher required 

Circle Reader Service Number 133 

Circle Reader Service Number 144 

Circle Reader Service Number 131 

FREE 486 Computer 
Color Monitor, Printer 

You can earn $2,000 to $10,000 per month from 
your kitchen tahle providing needed services for 
your community. Computer Business Services 
needs individuals to run a computer from their 
home. If you purchase our software, we will give 
you a FREE 486 computer, VGA color monitor, 
120 meg hard drive and a printer. If you already 
have a computer, we will give you a discount. The 
industrial revolution is over but the service revo- 
lution is just starting. Rather than setting up 
offices all over the U.S., we are showing individu- 
als and couples how to provide our services and 
letting everyone involved in this service revolu- 
tion reap the benefits. Our way of training our new service providers and their 
success rate is the talk of the computer industry. Call or write for a free 3 hour 
cassette tape and color literature and find out how easy it can be for you to 
earn money in your spare time and help your community. Begin part-time and 
still retain the security of your present position. 

Call toll-free: 

1^800^343^8014, ext. 303 

(in Indiana: 317-758-4415) Fax to: (317) 758-5827 Or Write: 
Computer Business Services, Inc., CBSI Plaza, Ste. 303, Sheridan, IN 46069 

FREE CBSI 486 Computer 



Claims Processing 
and Billing 

One of the top business opportunities in 
America today! Work full or part time. A 
few hours a week can provide $5000 extra 
income monthly. A National Company do- 
ing Billing and Electronic Claims Process- 
ing for locul physicians/dentists. No geo- 
graphic restrictions on your marketing en- 
deavors. A sound business opportunity 
that can offer you a higher quality of life 
in one of America's biggest growth indus- 
tries. Extensive training, both technical 
and marketing in St. Petersburg, Florida. 
An investment of $6995, and PC required. 

Be in business for yourself ... 
but not by yourself 

Your computer can 

make money while 

* * you sleep... * * 

Revolutionary New] 
High-Tech Business 

almost runs itself! 

Your computer and modem will work all 
night providing a profitable service to busi- 
nesses in your area. With this totally new : 
service, your computer will automatically j 
do off-site data backups for your clients 1 
at night, while businesses are closed, us- 
ing our special software. It's an ideal 
home- or office-based business. 

V The RBS Book shows you how to j 
set up and run your own Remote I 
Backup Service. Includes 3 Bonus Dis- 
kettes - 70 RBS S/W & PD programsi ' 

Vour exclusive TeieBack Pro RBS 

Software runs the service for you. 
4t a Mf\ All the Info and software you 
A24Q need to get started! 30 day 
~ fc ^*' satisfaction guarantee. 

For all the details, and a FREE report on 
this exciting new industry, call for your 
Free Information Package 

div. of Island Automated Medical Services, Inc. 

5999 Central Ave. Suite 300 

St. Petersburg, Florida 33710 

800-322-1139 Ext. 300 


813-347-2519 FAX 

Circle Reader Service Number 110 

Ummr ani GOVERNMENT trust 


the Business Opportunity 
oTthe 90's 

Don't be misled into spending 
thousands of dollars for a utility 
training program. If you have 
been disappointed with any of 
the other utility auditing programs, 
you owe it to yourself to investi- 
gate the PUC Training System. 

New Release • Also Avoiloble 


The most sophisticated utility auditing software available! 


14-hr Automated Info/Fax back tine 

Sales 800-833-4732' 


Precision Data 

654 S. White Station Rd 
Memphis, TN 38117 

Easy to learn and only 


You can earn over 

per day! 

"You Just Need to Have 

the Right Information and the 

Desire to Succeed," 

This is a "Solid Business Opportunity" 
from only 




Public Utility Consultants 


Circle Reader Service Number 316 


f*W fiUB6€R STflMPS 

. Pp*^ For your ouun use or o 
profitable sideline business 

Self-Inking and traditional 

knob handle stamps can 

be made for less than $1. 

Retail prices will start in 

the $10+ range. 

Informational signs, nameplates, 

control panels, name badges, 

and hundreds of other signage 

items can be made for pennies 

per square inch. 

Complete systems are less than $2,000 


Brownsville Rd., D-200, Mt. Vernon, IL 62864 
Phone: 800-STAMPCALL Fax: 800-STAMPFAX 

Circle Reader Service Number 231 











SMC, 9401 De Solo Ave., 

Dept, 879-69 
Chatsworth, CA 91311 

Circle Reader Service Number 132 


215-445-1 111 


Lively Chat • Gif 's Galore 

Internet Mail • News Groups 

1000's of DOS 8c Windows Files 

] Service is FREE You Pay LP. Charge , 

[ 86jdi|0 'CH Aod noA 33cJd Sj eoj/vies ' 
sepoN IIV L/N/9 Mt7't7L sseoov linj 

33dd 33dd 33dd 33dd 33dd 



Make Money With A Computer 

Own a lifetime license for a patent to make a 
product that will ptaft adults, deliijht and educate 
children, and return high profit n a minimal 
investment. That' the Hire-fire sum - formula that Best 
Personalized rV iks, Inc. offer* to distributors who are 
building strong, easy to nin, highly profitable businesses. 

As the leader in the industry Best Personalia*! Bcxita, Inc. is 
partners with such high profile companies as Walt Disney 
for their all time favorite Disney characters, Mattel Toys 
for Barbie, Warner Brothers for Buss Bunny and the 
Looney Tunn and the National Ft- jrball League for the 
Super Bowl and NFL teams and fr .;os. 

By tea mi PL* up with these world renown companies, 
Best Personalised Books Inc. makes it possible to produce 
products with name recognition that alms V sell Themselves. 

PcrsonalizcJ Uoks are instant favorites because the 
child is the star (/each story. An extensive array of titles 
ippeals t a wide range of ages and taste- and includes 
well-written stories on religious and ethnic themes that 
reinforce family values- 

No computer experience is necessary to create a 
personalised book. With Best's strong marketing program, 
you'll find selling options are limitless. You can run a 
profitable mail order businsB from home, set up on 
locati n at malls, craft fairs and flea markets, or team- up 
with 1 1 md- raising groups to promote lit e racy. 

Strong dealer support is a priority. To help you make 
even bigger profits, (W offers other pc ra tfialized products 
including clocks, audio cassette tapes, birth announcements, 
calendars and stationery for reens and adulrs. 

Best Personalized Books, Inc. J?"* 8 *" 80 ' 

Best Plaia ♦ 4901 Airborn * Dallas, TX 75149 FREE OOOK 3110 Kit 

Aladdin, Mickey Mouse, NFL Super Bowi, NFL Teams and Logos, Daffy Duck, Yosemite Sam, 
Sylvester, Tweety, Porky Pig, Donald Duck, Goofy, Pluto, Winnie the Pooh, Barbie, Bugs 
Bunny and The Looney Tunes are trademarked properties. 

US Patent 5,21 3,461 

"" Learn ] 
Computers! • 


Home study. 
Learn the per- 
sonal compu- 
ter for a better 
career and an 
easier home 
life. Exciting, 
easy to follow. 
Free booklet. 

Call 800-223-4542 

The School of 
Computer Training 

6065 Roscwell Road 
Dept. KKK68002, Atlanta, GA 30328 

. Be a computer 
! repair expert! 

' Professional-level home 

I study teaches you PC re- 
pairs, troubleshooting, 
upgrading, installation, 
I and servicing. 
Increase your value as 
Ian employee or open your 
own business. No high- 
tech knowledge, no ex- 
I pensive instruments. 
Free career literature. 

. 800-223-4542 


. Phone ( 1_ 

- ^P- 

J L 

I The School of PC Repair 
6065 Rosewell Road 
Dept. JJK68002, Atlanta, GA 30328 

Earn Money at Home [* WIN LOTTO! 

with a Computer gail Howards 

I Electronic Claims Processing 

''One of the 10 Hottest Businesses for 1994" 
— Entrepreneur Magazine Catalog 

A New High Income, Home-based 
Business— Processing Health Claims 

National Claims Service offers the most 
complete package available, including a 
2 day training seminar, video training 
courses, software and a professional start- 
up package. Previous computer or billing 
experience are not required. Electronic 
Claims Processing has excellent income 
potential, working part or full time. 
Capital required: $3,495 to $7,995 

For our Free Information 
Packet, Call us Toll Free 

1-800-697-1569 ext. 250 


Circle Reader Service Number 233 

Kids 7 Computer Book 

Includes six shareware programs for 
kids on one 3-1/2 high-density disk, "A 
Parents' Guide to Kids and Computer," 
and "An Overview of Children's 
Software." On the disk: ABC's, Brix, 
Dotso, Math Rescue, The Mice Men, 
and Word Rescue. 

To order your copy send $18.95 plus $2.50 for shipping 
and handling (U.S. , $4 to Canada and $6 other) to 
COMPUTE Books, c/o CCC, 2500 McClellan Ave. 
Pennsauken, NJ 08109. (Residents of NC, NJ, and NY 
please add appropriate tax; Canadian orders add 7% 
goods and services Tax.) All orders must be paid in U.S. 
funds drawn on a U.S. bank. Orders will be shipped via 
UPS Ground Service. Offer good while supplies last. 

Disk requires an IBM or compatible PC, 286 or higher, at 
least 512K RAM, MS-DOS 3.2 or higher, hard disk, one high- 
density 3.5-inch floppy drive, and VGA or SVGA graphics. 

Won 39 Lotto Jackpots 
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picking winners • Over 50 valuable charts & reports • 86-page 
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< Automatic SMART PICKS™ • A $295.00 value. Special Offer 
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COMPUTER WHEEL™ — Has 252 Lotto Wheeling Systems with 

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BOTH for only $99.95 + $3 S/H 

(IBM/Comp. 5.25 or 3.5) 




Dept. C-12, P.O. Box 1519 • While Plains, NY 10602 
1-800-876-GAIL (4245) Of 914-761-2333 

Circle Reader Service Number 109 

"Connect to the World 
through Internet" 


Members receive FREE 
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shipping. All others may call forshipping casta* Oil lor write 
for our Latesi free catalog . Software Support lniL-m;ilional 
2700 N . E. . A ad rese n Rd . # A - 1 V;t n c uv e r \V a . 98 66 1 

Experience Virtual 
Romance with Girlfriend 

Let'sface it, all the adult GIFs and 
PCX images in the world are 
going to get old after you view 
theni a few times. Wouldn't you 
prefer to talk to the woman who is 
undressing on your VGA screen? 
Wouldn't it be stimulating to tell 
her what to do and then see and 
hearherresponses? Now you can 
experience Virtual Romance with 
GirlfriendTM, the girl who lives 
in yourPC compatible! 

AIVR Corporation 

709 Ungco #106, Dept CO407, 

Richardson, TX 75081 

Girlfriend Lisa (PG-13) $59.95 
Girlfriend Su/y (Adult) $59.95 
Girlfriend Ten PG-13 $69.95 
Girlfriend Teri Adult $79.95 
Girlfriend Speaks: voice output 
using Sound Blaster card 
$29.95. Add $4 shipping & 
handling. C.O.D. add $4. For 
adult products, must stale age 
21+. Dive into the world of 
adult Virtual Romance! Circle 
our reader service number for 
info! Dealer inquiries invited. 



Circle Reader Service Number 264 



(904) 789-8101 


Lion's Den International 
CD-ROM Publishing 

Fax (904) 789-8170 
2820 Howland Blvd., Suit 
Deltona, Florida 32725 U 

Circle Reader Service Number 305 


Language is 

less of a 

barrier win the 


translation products. 

(continued from page 120) 
ware, 5870 Stoneridge Drive, 
Suite 1, Pleasanton, California 
94588; (800) 822-3522. 

On the Fast Track 

Services should soon be 
speeding up for American vet- 
erans, as computer systems 
at 98 Veterans Affairs (VA) fa- 
cilities are now contracted for 
upgrade. The existing VAX 
cluster computer systems are 
to be replaced with 64-bit 
DECpc AXP/150s, making for 
faster and more efficient data 
handling while maintaining 
compatibility with all VA oper- 
ating systems. The $27 million 
contract between the VA and 
Digital Equipment will make 
the Brooklyn VA Medical Cen- 
ter the fourth center to have 
this technology, which is slated 
for nationwide implementation. 

Speaking in Tongues 

Graduates with degrees in for- 
eign language may soon be 

nonstatus Whole Documents At Onctf 



BJ-clr«ct>onal, npfcrt* Document '^inflation At TTia 
Puffi Of A BuTUm 1 


hard pressed to find jobs if 
the new breed of translation 
software catches on. Trans- 
late It! and Word Translator, 
both from Timeworks Interna- 
tional, are highly accurate 
and affordable translation pro- 
grams perfect for business. 

Translate It! can convert 
whole documents bidirection- 
ally with idiomatic accuracy. 
Currently, Translate It! trans- 


lates English to and from 
three languages: Spanish, Ger- 
man, and French. It can proc- 
ess over 20,000 words per 
hour with up to 95 percent ac- 
curacy, and it has a user-mod- 
ifiable dictionary of 250,000 
words. A built-in grammar 
module is great for learning 
specific information on conju- 
gation, usage, and definition. 
Word Translator is a multi- 
directional dictionary handling 
U.S. English, British English, 
Spanish, French, and Ger- 
man. It has over 40,000 
words with 60,000 meanings, 
as well as 130,000 cross-trans- 
lations for each language. 
Each program has a suggest- 
ed retail price of $99.95. Con- 
tact Timeworks International, 
625 Academy Drive, North- 
brook, Illinois 60062; (800) 

Repair Shack 

Although technology is intend- 
ed to make our lives easier, 
46 percent of Americans feel 
that they've been left behind 
by technology. What many 
need (and what Radio Shack 
offers) is a resource to pro- 
vide guidance in making intel- 
ligent choices among the myr- 
iad of new electronic prod- 
ucts. With its "You've Got 
Questions, We've Got An- 
swers" campaign, Radio 
Shack, in the words of its pres- 
ident, Leonard Roberts, 
hopes to "demystify technolo- 
gy for all Americans." 

Part of this campaign in- 
volves putting repair shops in 
cities across the country to pro- 
vide quick service on out-of- 
warranty brand-name prod- 
ucts. You can take your non- 
functioning item to any Radio 
Shack store. The store will trans- 
fer the item to the repair facili- 
ty. Repairs are expected to be 
completed within 15 days. 
When the item is returned to 
the store for pickup, you will 
be notified by mail that it's 
fixed and ready to be taken 

home. With successful test mar- 
keting in Atlanta and Tampa un- 
der its belt, The Repair Shop 
at Radio Shack plans to meet 
the need for a trustworthy na- 
tionwide repair service by the 
end of the year. 

Plans are also underway to 
introduce brand-name comput- 
ers into Radio Shack stores, 
which have traditionally sold 
only Tandy computers. IBM 
has been selected as the first 
non-Tandy computer to be of- 
fered in Radio Shack stores. 
AST computers are also be- 
ing considered. 

The Great Outdoors 

Outside magazine, which 
reaches over 1,5 million ac- 
tive Americans, is projected 
to be offered online early in 
1995, thanks to an agreement 
made with Starwave. The 
monthly magazine, which has 
been a staple for outdoor en- 
thusiasts since the 1970s, will 
be offered on Ziff-Davis Inter- 
active's Interchange Online 

Along with Outside's ar- 
chives and ongoing reporting, 
there will be time-sensitive in- 
formation such as weather 
and event reporting. Star- 
wave's vice president, Tom 
Phillips, says that his compa- 
ny hopes to "create an elec- 
tronic outdoor-adventure com- 
munity, where enthusiasts 
share opinions and informa- 
tion." Contact Starwave, 
13810 SE Eastgate Way, 
Suite 400, Bellevue, Washing- 
ton 98005; (206) 957-2000. 

Companies, publicists, or pub- 
lic relations firms with prod- 
ucts or services of interest 
suitable for "News & Notes" 
should send information along 
with a color slide or color trans- 
parency to News & Notes, At- 
tention: Byron Poole, COM- 
PUTE, 324 West Wendover Av- 
enue, Suite 200, Greensboro, 
North Carolina 27408. □ 



The All-New Strategy Guide 

for Building Prosperous Cities 

Includes 3,5" Disk 

Jason R. Rich 

WhehSer you play SimCiry 2000 on a 
PC or a Mac, here's the book you need 
to create excising, prosperous cities. 
Author Jason Rich explains each 
feature in SimCiry 2000, giving you 
several sample cities to try on the 
accompanying 3.5-inch disk. 

Yl j! Rush me my copy df Hie book/disk combina- 
tion SimCiry 2000 City Design at $2 1 ,95 per copy. 

□ PC disk □ Mac disk 



City" Slate HP 

Copies ar $ 2 1 . 95 ecth $_ 

Shipping and handling $2.50 

NY, NC H NJ please add sales lax 

Canada please odd Jl .54 GST per book 

Tola I Due 

Please check the form of pay men I 

□ foray Onkr D tirnk □ VISA □ Maslercard 
Credit Cord Number 
Expiration Date 


Mail Ihis coupon along with the payment to: 
324 West Wendo ver Avenue 
Greensboro, NC2740S 

For tester service, fax your credit card order to: 


All payment must be made in US Funds drawn an a US 
bank. Please dEow tour weeks For delivery 



Sanyo, Tadiran, Panasonic, Eveready, Gates, Lithium, 
Lead Acid, Nl-Cad, Alkaline & Chargers. We Stock 
batteries lor laptop/notebook, Camcorders, cordless 
phones, drills, Norelco shavers, RC Cars & invisible 
Fence, Call & ask. Wholesale 1 MC/VI/AMEX/PO 

Battery Express 

713 Gladstone St., Parkersburg, WV 26101 
1-800-666-2296 Fax:304-428-2297 304-428-2296 

Circle Reader Service Number 319 

Computer Batteries & More 

We stock hundreds of butteries - We build battery packs! 
Need a replacement battery for your PC's motherboard, 
battery for your laptop, camcorder, cordless or cellular 
telephone. Home Security System? Call Us!! 


USA E. Arapahu - Suite 126 Richardson. TX 75081 
1-800-776-5267 FAX 214-231-2269 

Circle Reader Service Number 324 


BELL $ 100,000 A YEAR 



BBS 407-547-8759 


407-585-7354 FAX 407-547-1703 

Circle Reader Service Number 336 


Join the World's Largest Travel Industry as one of our 
associates. Work at home or office, full or part time, travel 
discounts. You'll be the boss. You can be On-Line with 
airlines, hotels, car rentals and more. FUN, PROFITABLE 
& LOW OVERHEAD. Start immediately for only $2500. 

Traveler^ Choice Ca " tor FREE brochure 
Associates 1-800-446-0096 

Circle Reader Service Number 325 



| Turn Any Computer Into a Money Machine. | 

FREE REPORT Reveals Millionaire's . 

I Amazing Secrets. Call 24 Hours for FREE I 

■ REPORT 1-800-221-3813 Operator CPT. i 

Circle Reader Service Number 331 



PC users needed. 

$35,000 potential. Details. 

Call (1)805 962-8000 Ext. B-30033 

Programmer/analyst: design & test database application 
products under Window based client/server environment 
by using PowerBuilder & PowerTool; Write function- 
al applications according to their business requirements; 
design data models itnd create drafts of database apply- 
ing Sybase. ORACLE & SQL Server, Novell, Micro- 
soft NT & Starlan Client/Server Networks; design Win- 
dow's & DalaWindow\s screen layouts; write & lest 
debug source codes; build dynamic link library & dis- 
tributable software package. Bachelor degree in engi- 
neering, 6 months training in PowerBuilder, 6 months 
experience are required; $28,75 1/yr, 40hr/wk, 8:00- 
5:00. Only U,S. citizen or permanent resident can ap- 
ply; send resume to Job Service of Florida, PO Box 
"C\ Clearwater, FL 34618-4090. Job # 1066126 


PFMT I.44M .44ea, I.2M ,32ca, 720K ,3Seu, 360K ,26ca. 
MS-DOS &2 UPGRADE $49.95. AMS 1-8O0-523-7O23. 


& CD's for IBM 

Same Price for 3.5" or 5.25" 

Shipping & Handling: $2/order 



F-PROTECT SUPERB Virus scanning/cleaning. 
SCAN McAfee's Latest Virus scanner. 

W« wH ship momt r*c*nt version •valabtol 

WILDWEST - BACK TO FOREST - most of catalog 

BIG ITEMS $2 on DSHD onlvl 

HOCUS POCUS from Apogee (366, VGA) 

MONSTER BASH Catacomb Abyss ZONE66 

KENSLAB (386 only) DUKE NUKEM II (386, VGA) 


SANOO FIGHTER - Kungfu Action (386, VGA) 

ANDROID Epic's Pinball Sensation! (386, VGA) 

DOOM Super Wotf3d type (SSe.VGA/Mb.HD) $4 

RAPTOR Apogee's Space Action (386,VGA,HD) $4 

SWIMSUIT 6 beauties and GIF viewer S3 


CD list sent with Catalog 
Special - New customers order from this ad and get 
free shipping and handlingf 

We have Adult titles: Proof of age required. 

ComPro Software 

248 W. Park Ave. Suite 356 

Long Beach, NY 11561 


You can order from this add by phone or mail ! 
Please don't forget to tell us diskette size ! 
Circle Reader Service Number 326 



For IBM-Compatibles. 48 Adult Shareware 
Games, Demos, & Novelty Programs; 1000+ 
Sizzling Adult GIF Images, 140+ Mini-Movies, 
800+ Adult Stories, Adult Icons, BBS Doors, 
and More! Simple Menus; No Installation 
Necessary! $59. Dealers Welcome. 

We carry Many other Adult CD-ROM Titles for 
IBM and Macintosh, from the newest to the 
hard-lo-find. Request our free lists. Specify 
age {21+) and Computer Type, 

Clearlight Software 
Dept. CCD, P.O. Box 1411 

Milwaukee, Wl 53201 
Voice/Fax (414) 962-2616 

Circle Reader Service Number 342 



Converters & Accessories 



All Major Brand Names * Loweel Prices! I 


V jMdlOn Cable Co. 1 -ttOO-334-8475^ 

Circle Reader Service Number 320 



Why Pay A High Monthly Fee 9 
Save $100's A Year 

• All Jerrold, Oak, Hamlin, Zenith, 
Scientific Atlanta, and more. 

• 30 Day Money Back Guarantee 

• Shipment within 24 hours 

• Visa/MC and COD. 

No Illinois Orders Accepted 

Purchaser agrees to comply wilh all slate and 

federal laws recjardinq private ownership ol cable 

TV equipment Consult local cable operator 

1430 Miner Street, Suite 522 
Des Piaines, IL 60016 

Free Catalog 1-800-542-9425 
Information 1-708-540-1106 

Circle Reader Service Number 323 













Circle Reader Service Number 339 

• Jerrold® • Oak 

• Zenith • Hamline 

• Tocom • Pioneer 

• Scientific Atlanta 



3584 Kennebec, Eagan, MN 55122 



Circle Reader Service Number 338 




Ace Products 


Circle Reader Service Number 321 



***** STARRING ***** 






ORDERS & INFORMATION 1-800-345 B 8927, 


7325V2 Reseda Blvd., Dept 1122 

Reseda. CA 91335 

Circle Reader Service Number 341 


All Languages Available 

Translators, Fonts, Tutorials, Dictionaries. Native 
Japanese, Chinese, Spanish & German speaking 
staif. We are experts on foreign language software. 
Best Support & Best Prices. 


Character Language Resources 

2130 Sawtelle Blvd. 304A / Los Angeles, CA 90025 

Circle Reader Service Number 332 


Software - Hardware - Systems 


Translators -Tutorials -Fonts 
Dictionaries -Word Processors 
Spell Checkers - Keyboards 

Best Prices-Best Source-Best Service 


Use Any Language In All 
English Windows Apps $79 

English-Japanese Dictionary $29 
English-Chinese Dictionary $29 
English-Spanish Translator $39 
LTGOLD Russian Translator $179 

FREE multimedia Catalog 

486 DLC-40 LOADED $645 

FAX/MODEMS 14.4 $89 !!! 

Discounted Software 

WinFax $9 I'nicomin Plus S59 
TransLanguage Inc. Fax71 4-998-1 296 

Circle Reader Service Number 327 


and Amiga. Compatible computers available. Quick 
servicc-30 day warranty. MOM & POP's Computer 
Shop. 1 14 N. 16th, Bethany, MO 64424 (816) 425-4400 


COMPUTER TOO OLD? Save Money, Upgrade your 
XT/ AT! $149-386/40, $249-486/33. Complete Kit. 
Easy Instructions. 1-800-362-5053. CompuBoost. 
27101 Aliso Crk Rd, #124, Aliso Viejo, CA 92656 


FOR SALE; Complete Commodore 1 28 computer 
system: Motorola 13 in. RGB monitor, 1571 HD, Star 
NX- 1000 near letter quality printer and 35 pieces of 
earning + utility software. All manuals + cables. Best 
Offer. Call Paul at (717) 839 3365. 


Russian Ladies, tmtf beautiful, educated, 

are sincerely seeking relationships 

1000 Ladies selected fram over 25.000. 



Oepl. 178 ' PO.H. 048651 * AHwita, GA 30356 

I ,i 404*451 5774 

hi. {404} 458-0909 i* hours 


Circle Reader Service Number 318 

"Rs jpl tins L-xulmy di 
. Safr Markdmg * 90 W. 



(h;iltl<vt,s. dourlotU. A; some p;ulliifksi 

Amaze Your Kricnd* 
Wilh A lodt Pickim: LXTiiuiHralioii. 
Yrnj iwi t M/t-d mctiJ Icnsion ku>s, Ihf slide 
ptuk. pnsciae mstmciitms St mun.'. Noil - : itus 
devia* is In be and tor dL-iniMistr.iliun 
purpose nnly! SaibJaelion (^uaninlei-tJ nr 

Full ttt-riind; 2 weeks delivery. 
, Send Ndw ONLY 5«/J5 * S> SJfc II in: 

Av N0J66K * RwMfc Md 20K31 _ 

Closing date for October classifieds 

is July 15. 

Call/Fax your ad (516) 757-9562 

Does Your Heart Good. 
^P American Heart Association 

COMPUTE Classified is a low-cost way to tell 
over 295,000 microcomputer owners about 
your product or service. 
Additional Information. Please read carefully. 

Rates: S40 per line, minimum of four lines. Any or all of the 
first line set in capital letters at no charge. Add $15 per 
line for bold face words, or S59 for the entire ad set in bold- 
face (any number of lines.) 

Terms: Prepayment is required We accept checks, mon- 
ey orders, VISA, or MasterCard. 

General Information: Advertisers using post oifice bo;< num- 
ber in their ads must supply permanent address and 
telephone number. Orders will not be acknowledged. Ad 
will appear in nexl available issue after receipt. 


Classified display ads measure 2'/i"wide and are priced 
according to height 1" = S285; 1 7?" = S420; 2" * S550 

Call Maria Manasen, Classified Manager. COMPUTE, 1 
Woods Ct., Huntington, NY 11743, at 516-757-9562. 



$.99 PER (5.25) DD PH. TOLL FREE 1-800-755-6795 



business and adult .99 per 5'/-. low density, 
virus free disk. 3 V? also available. Free catalog. 
Ro-lin's, P.O. Box 516cp, Grove City, OH 43123 



ICA Software 


Highest Quality 
Lowest Price 

Guaranteed! ! ! 

Free Catalog 

P.O. Box 272, Monroe, CT 06468 

Circle Reader Service Number 322 

programs. Send Si. 00 (Refunded on 1st order) for 
catalog oil disk (specify drive) lo BD, P.O. Box 
246-CP, Park City, KY 42160-0246 

Give ( 
Ability \X/ j 
a Chance. 


FREE LIST. Specify 64/128, Amiga or IBM. Ccntsible 
Software, PO Box 930, St. Joseph, Ml 49085. 
Phone: 616-428-9096 BBS: 616429-721 1 







ROCHESTER, Ml 48308-2205 

Circle Reader Service Number 329 


Outstanding IBM software 

selected specially for Home, 

Office and Entertainment use. 

•1000's of programs- 

-Money-back Guarantee!- 

•Lowest Prices Anywhere!- 


14 Moreland Ave. Oakville CT 06779 

Circle Reader Service Number 344 

The ONLY Lottery Systems With 
are those in Gail Howard's 
Call Toil-Free 1 -800-876-G-A-l-L 
(See Her Ad in Product Mart.) 

Circle Reader Service Number 328 


^%qj "Awesome action, fantastic graphics... " 

Featuring "try-before-you-buy" entertainment, business, 
personal, educational, Windows and utilities software for 
IBM/compatibles. Award Winners I Sample game: $3.00 
Prof. Rock 7536Forsvthe Suite 265 St. Louis MO 63105 

FREE CATALOG: 1-800-821-7625 

Circle Reader Service Number 343 


Free catalog or $2 for sample & cata- 
log (refundable). Specify computer. 
CALOKE IND (B), Box 18477, 
Raytown, MO 64133 

Circle Reader Service Number 334 


Low prices since 1988! ASP Approved Vendor. Finlo 
Software, Dept. M. RL 2. Box 44, Rosebud, TX 76570 
or Voice/FAX (800)859-5040. VISA/MC accepted. 

Attention Software Designers. Small 
Software Company Looking to expand. 
Needs Business Application Software 
it can appropriate. Call (21 2) 488-8255. 


We buy and sell used current & prior versions 
of most popular IBM compatible software. 
Completely legal. Includes all ORIGINAL 
MANUALS AND DISKS guaranteed virus free. 
Call 8am-5pm EST Mon-Fri for free price list. 

RECYCLED SOFTWARE 1-800-851-2425 

Circle Reader Service Number 333 

lOOO'.s of PD/Shareware programs on 100's 
of disks. Free listing or $1 for large 
descriptive catalog (specify computer). 
DISKS O'PLFNTY INC., 8362 Pines Blvd., 
Suite 270B. Pembroke Pines, FL 33024 


FREE VIDEO Accredited External Degree Programs-Com- 
puter Science, Business Management. Health Services Admin- 
istration, Criminal Justice Management, Psychology & Coun- 
seling, Education and other specialized programs, Undergrad- 
uate^ raduate, Financial Aid. (800) 292-7412, LA SALLE 
UNIVERSITY, Dept. 412, Mandeville, LA 70470-4000 

("Computer Training At Home"! 

| Independent Study in Computer Operation and 

Programming. 150,000 graduates ^ ted * c ■ 
| since 1934. Send for free Course o* A \\ 
. Catalog. Cleveland Institute of £ Jrnft%L ** 

| Electronics, Dept. AZC07, 1776 E. 5 T~X*T £ 
- 17th St., Cleveland, OH 44114. \ l-T^-M $ 

ki— — — — — — — — ^ .T^J 

Circle Reader Service Number 330 

Special Limited 

# FREE! \ 

Pay only S&H 
of $9.95 

SWin Millions 

Beat The Lottery 



Lotto Picker 1 ™ will uncover & 
exploit these biases for your 
benefit. No reams of useless 
statistics or guesswork - tells you 
exactly which numbers to play. 
The easiest, most effective 
program to use & understand. 
GUARANTEED** work for all 
lotteries worldwide! 

LOTTO PICKER 3 only HURRY! Offer Expires Soon! 
$ ^f 9*SSf i_ 7 i 3_3i 7 _i 9 6 i S(0de Q644 

|GE Ridge, 848 Rennsselaer Av, Dept CP, Si Island, NY 10309 

For MS-DOS (IBM/Com pats) only. Offer docs not apply to Apple II 
or C64. Version 2. 1 for these maehines may be purchased for $34,50 
each. NY residents please add sales lax. 

Circle Reader Service Number 317 







ROCHESTER, Ml 48308-2205 

Circle Reader Service Number 337 


FREE. Children's educational software 

catalog. Over 150 of the most popular titles. 

Give your child a head start. Call The 

Edutainment Company at 800-338-3844 Today! 



To Be A Computer Programmer 

• Increase your earning power 
•Includes DOS, QBASIC, and C 

• Instructors available by phone or modem ™1PuTER 
Call for free brochure: 1 M0-787-AICS SCIENCES 

Aandind Memkr of iht World Association afVmwifatt ami Collets 

Circle Reader Service Number 340 


• B.S. & M.B.A. in Business 

• B.S. in Environmental Studies 

• M.S. in Management/ 
Environmental Studies 

• Approved lor tuition reim- 
bursement by major companies. 




World MiA-iaiWn. ofVnurriilsu i CuLtfri 

Circle Reader Service Number 338 

Be a computer 
repair expert! 

Home study. You could earn 
great money troubleshooting, 
repairing, upgrading, and in- 
stalling PCs. Send or call now 
for free career literature. 


The School of PC Repair 

6065 Roswell Rd., Dept. JJK680 
Atlanta, Georgia 30328 

Circle Reader Service Number 335 


Byron Poole 

Teach kids how to 

handle risky 

situations with the 

What Would 

You Do? series tram 

Digital Theater. 

Safe at Home 

If your kids are left at home to 
brave the savage elements 
without you, Digital Theater 
has a new toy to teach them 
how to hold down the fort. 
What Would You Do? At 
Home, the child safety multime- 
dia adventure, is the first in an 
interactive series designed to 
teach kids how to handle 
tricky safety situations. There 
are eight lessons, each pre- 
sented in a multimedia story 
where your child can create 
his or her own presentation. 
While encouraging creativity, 
these miniproductions can be 
played back (again and 
again), reinforcing the les- 
sons learned. Lessons in- 
clude what to do if a stranger 
comes to the door and if a 
neighbor's house catches on 
fire. Future categories in this 
series include What Would 


You Do? First Aid, What 
Would You Do? School Days, 
and What Would You Do? On 
Your Own. Contact Digital The- 
ater, 5875 Peachtree Industri- 
al Boulevard, Norcross, Geor- 
gia 30092; (800) 344-8426, 
(404) 446-3580, (404) 446- 
9164 (fax). 

Healthcare Solution 

With all the talk about 
healthcare, it's about time for 
some emphasis to be put on 


taking an active role in one's 
own health maintenance. 

Great Bear Technology, 
which recently reduced prices 
in its Great Bear Software and 
Healthsoft product lines from 
$69 and S59 down to $49, has 
introduced Family HealthTrack- 
er, an attractive Windows tool 
to help you stay on top of your 
health history. Arranged as a 
notebook that's separated into 
seven sections, Family Health- 
Tracker assists you in keeping 
a diary of fitness activities, pre- 
paring a list of medical expens- 
es for insurance and tax pur- 
poses, and maintaining a re- 
cord of your child's allergies 
and vaccinations. You even 
get an address book and a 
collection of over 300 health 
resources to make dealing 
with medical problems easier. 
Inspiration is also part of the 
package: Advice provided by 
the program runs the gamut 
from encouraging you to eat 
better to recommending ways 
to reduce stress. 

Contact Great Bear Technol- 
ogy, 1100 Moraga Way, Suite 
200, Moraga, California 94556; 
(800) 795-4325. 


In an effort to bolster public 
trust in computing and informa- 
tion technology, a new nonpo- 
litical entity has formed: the Na- 
tional Computer Ethics and 
Responsibilities Campaign 
(NCERC). Sponsors for 
NCERC include the Computer 
Ethics Institute, CompuServe, 
Merrill Lynch, the Software 
Publishers Association, and 
the National Computer Secu- 
rity Association. Peter Tippett, 
NCERC's cochair, says the 
group plans to explore "what 
is private or in the public do- 
main; what constitutes theft, li- 
bel, and plagiarism; and how 
to deal with electronic ver- 
sions of potentially controver- 
sial content such as pornogra- 
phy." Although NCERC 
doesn't officially take a stand 

on any given issue, some of 
its sponsors are said to have 
already developed basic ten- 
ets of responsible computer 

NCERC is available for or- 
ganizations and individuals to 
provide the tools and resourc- 
es necessary for responsible 
computer use. For more infor- 
mation, contact the National 
Computer Ethics and Respon- 
sibilities Campaign, 18054 
Bluesail Drive, Los Angeles, 
California 90272-2901; 630- (Internet). 


The approaching end of the 
twentieth century causes peo- 
ple to look to the future and to 
look back at the past. Natural- 
ly, an interest in genealogy 
goes along with a fascination 
with history. For help getting 
your own family history in 
line, Individual Software offers 
Family Ties for Windows. The 
program uses a note-card in- 
terface for ease of entry, with 
tabs popping up on the right 
side of the screen as new fam- 
ily members are added. You 
can print out up to five gener- 
ations of information, and you 
can enter up to 2000 names, 
with a full page available to 
sum up each person's life. 
There's even room for divorc- 
es and second marriages. 
Special features include auto- 
matic notification when dupli- 
cate or conflicting information 
is entered and the ability to im- 
port and export data into GED- 
COM (GEnealogical Data 
COMmunications) format so 
you can transfer data from oth- 
er genealogical programs. 

A selling point for Family 
Ties is its extensive reference 
section with a suggested ge- 
nealogy reading list and a list 
of archives, libraries, and ge- 
nealogical centers nation- 
wide. The list price for Family 
Ties is $24.95. For more infor- 
mation, contact Individual Soft- 
(continued on page 1 16) 

like Nothing You Have Ever Experienced Before" 


See it -Fly it^Fire It 

"It looks more like it belongs on the weapons 
control panel of a klingon battlecruiser than 
on your computer desk." 

COMPUTE (June '94) Denny Atkin 


Flight & Weapon Control System 

24 programmable buttons 

▼ Analog or digital rudder and throttle control 

▼ Jet style joystick handle for aileron and elevator controls 
Graphical user interface software 

▼ Includes custom control settings for the most popular flight simulators 

▼ Compatible with virtually all flight programs 

Avoiiabie for IBM PC or compatible computers 

For Additional information call: 
Advanced Advanceo Gravis Computer Technology Ltd. 
1790 Mioway Lane, Bellihgham, WA 98226 
Tel: 604 431 5020 or Fax: 604 431 51 55 

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Go ahead and scream. From deep 
within your nightmare, utter a 
piteous cry — as though your life 
depends on someone hearing you. 
Because, in this reality, it does. 



From the master of computer 
gaming comes an interactive 
suspense thriller so shockingly real 
you'll pray It's only a nightmare: 

Phantasmagoria is no ordinary 
game, no tawdry attempt at horror. 
We wouldn't dare. Blending the 
talents of best-selling game 
designer Boberta Williams and a 
team of the world's finest 
cinematographers, Phantasmagoria 
unleashes an incarnate evil you 
never knew existed inside your PC. 



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